The mother of two young children left "Grey's Anatomy" in 2010 following a creative clash with the show's writers and producers.
Alexi Hawley is to pen and executive produce the pilot for the CIA series. Heigl will star in and executive produce the project, alongside Robert Simonds, her mother/manager Nancy Heigl, Hawley, Henry Crumpton, Rodney Faraon and Julia Franz, The Hollywood Reporter said.
"I have been passionate about, and enthralled by, this project from the moment Hank, Rodney and Bob brought it to me over a year ago," Heigl said.
"The story is not only compelling and intelligent but a look behind the curtain at the CIA we haven't seen before in film or television. I am thrilled and honored to have been asked to be a part of developing these stories and this character and bringing it all to life. NBC has been a true partner in their passion and support for the show that we've dreamed of making, and I could not be happier about joining forces with them. Together, with our brilliant writer Alexi Hawley, I believe we are going to make great television."