Pilots shooting now through April 25

Chicago’s version of TV pilot season is heating up with the nearly simultaneous production starting Saturday on three shows with strong possibilities of becoming network series.

What’s bringing joy to the city is that the pilots will have employed approximately 1,000 union workers and production people when completed, estimates Local 476’s Mark Hogan, who adds that 98% of the crew are local union members.

Saturday, Sony TV’s “The Line” (formerly titled “ATF”) starts shooting in Wicker Park over the weekend, and then moves downtown and to colorful Chicago neighborhoods.

Dylan Walsh (“The Stepfather”) has the lead role as an ATF agent who hunts down the most dangerous criminals like Terry Kinney, who joins the cast as a bank robber, poet, philosopher and sociopath.

Tony-winner Kinney is an Illinois native and co-founder of the Steppenwolf Theatre Company.

On Monday, the crew of Fox TV’s “Pleading Guilty” starts three weeks of production in a variety of city locations that include Wrigley Field.

Jason Isaacs stars as Mack, a cop-turned-attorney, described as “a big handsome Irish hunk” (Isaacs is English), who investigates the disappearance of his law firm’s top litigator. (In real life, Isaacs has a law degree).

Madchen Amick (“Damages”) plays Isaacs’ tough colleague and the firm’s top criminal defense attorney, who is having an affair with him and John Larroquette (“Boston Legal”) is the managing partner in the law firm where Isaacs works.

The potential series is based on Scott Turow’s best-selling novel of the same name.