TV Land Orders FIRST WIVES CLUB Comedy; Inks Deal with YOUNGER Creator Darren Star
Following a successful brand re-invention, TV Land continues to evolve and expand its roster of original scripted programming by partnering with A-list talent, producers and writers to become a destination for compelling, quality television. During the network's Upfront presentation held today at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York, Keith Cox, TV Land's Executive Vice President, Development and Original Programming, announced an overall deal with entertainment icon Darren Star, the creator, executive producer and writer of the network's critically-acclaimed comedy "Younger," keeping him on board to develop another project with the network. Cox also revealed that TV Land has renewed "Teachers" for a 20-episode second season after reaching an impressive average of 3.4 million viewers each week across all platforms (1 minute qualifier, average weekly reach).
TV Land also announced pilot orders for projects with prominent creative forces in the industry. The first is a fresh adaptation of the cult comedy hit "The First Wives Club," to be written by Rebecca Addelman ("New Girl") and executive produced by Jenny Bicks ("Sex and the City"), and the second is an untitled put pilot based on THE LIFE of Kyle Richards ("The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills") with Emmy(R)-winning executive producers John Wells ("Shameless," "ER," "The West Wing") and John Riggi ("The Comeback," "30 Rock," "Will & Grace"). These join the previously announced pilot "Nobodies," currently shooting in Los Angeles, executive produced by Emmy(R) winner Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone.
"Looking ahead, we're developing shows that are funny but also embrace real dramatic moments," said Cox. "We're fortunate to be working with such amazing collaborators as we continue to reinvent the network."
TV Land's growing list of comedies include "The Jim Gaffigan Show," premiering season two Wednesday, June 22nd at 10pm ET/PT, and "Impastor," premiering season two on Wednesday, July 13th at 10:30pm ET/PT. New series "Lopez," executive produced by comedian George Lopez and "Silicon Valley's" John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky, premieres Wednesday, March 30th at 10pm ET/PT. "Younger's" second season, which hit series highs this week with Adults 18-49, Adults 25-39 and total viewers (L+3), airs its finale on Wednesday, March 23rd at 10pm ET/PT and was recently renewed for a third season.
The event featured appearances by TV Land series stars Molly Bernard ("Younger"), Hilary Duff ("Younger"), Jim Gaffigan ("The Jim Gaffigan Show"), Peter Hermann ("Younger"), George Lopez ("Lopez"), Debi Mazar ("Younger"), Miriam Shor ("Younger"), Nico Tortorella ("Younger"), and executive producers Alison Brie ("Teachers") and Darren Star ("Younger").
Descriptions of all the projects addressed in the presentation - including series and pilots in development - are below:
· "THE FIRST WIVES CLUB"
Putting a fresh twist on Paramount's iconic 1996 film, the pilot, to be written by Rebecca Addelman ("New Girl") and executive produced by Jenny Bicks ("Sex and the City," "The Big C"), will take place in modern day San Francisco. The story revolves around three women - friends and classmates in the 90s - who reconnect after their close friend from college dies in a freak accident. When they discover that they are all at a romantic crossroads, they band together to tackle divorce, relationships and life's other annoying challenges. Paramount Television will produce for TV Land.
Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone executive produce this comedy following Groundlings alums Hugh Davidson, Larry Dorf and Rachel Ramras - who play themselves and will also serve as executive producers - as they try desperately to land one of their famous friends for a feature script that they have developed, so that they, too, can rise to fame in Hollywood. JAX Media's Tony Hernandez will executive produce for TV Land.
· UNTITLED KYLE RICHARDS PILOT
The untitled pilot, set in the '70s, centers on Bonnie Nolan, a 40-year old woman with a beautiful home and two beautiful daughters to go with it. Finding herself alone after her marriage fails, Bonnie is an enigma of the times: a single woman with no means to support herself or her children. The project is inspired by Richards' real life upbringing, and her mother's struggle to raise her family and claim her own brand of independence in a world not ready to give it. The pilot is produced by John Wells Productions in association with Warner Horizon Television for TV Land, and will be executive produced by John Wells ("Shameless," "ER," "The West Wing") and John Riggi ("The Comeback," "30 Rock," "Will & Grace"), who wrote the pilot script. Richards will co-executive produce.
· "LOPEZ" - Series Premiere on Wednesday, March 30th at 10pm ET/PT
"Lopez" explores the real George Lopez we rarely get to see, pushed and pulled between the worlds of race, class and fame, yet always having a hard time fitting in. John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky ("Silicon Valley," "King Of The Hill") will executive produce the series with Lopez. Also executive producing are Michael Rotenberg ("It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia") of 3 Arts Entertainment and Troy Miller ("Arrested Development"), who is producing the show via Dakota Pictures.
· "YOUNGER" - Season Two Finale on Wednesday, March 23rd at 10pm ET/PT
"Younger" follows Liza (two-time Tony(R) winner Sutton Foster), a 40-year old woman who pretends to be 26 in order to get a job in the highly competitive world of publishing - and succeeds. Now working under the prickly Diana (Miriam Shor), Liza has to figure out how to balance her real life with best friend Maggie (Debi Mazar), and her "pretend" life with her new crew - friend/coworker Kelsey (Hilary Duff), fashion publicist Lauren (Molly Bernard) and the always-sketchy Thad (Dan Amboyer), Kelsey's boyfriend. After Liza let her secret slip to sexy young tattoo artist Josh (Nico Tortorella) at the end of the first season, she now must try to salvage their relationship, all while navigating a confusing chemistry with her boss Charles (Peter Hermann). The series is written and executive produced by entertainment icon Darren Star. JAX Media's Tony Hernandez will executive produce for TV Land.
· "THE JIM GAFFIGAN SHOW" - Season Two Premiere on Wednesday, June 22nd at 10pm ET/PT
"The Jim Gaffigan Show" is a critically-acclaimed single-camera comedy starring and inspired by the real life of comedian, actor and New York Times best-selling author Jim Gaffigan, chronicling one man's struggle in New York City to find a balance between fatherhood, stand-up comedy and an insatiable appetite. Also starring in the series are Ashley Williams, Adam Goldberg, and Michael Ian Black, with appearances by Tongayi Chirisa. The show was co-created by Peter Tolan ("Rescue Me") and executive producer Jim Gaffigan, and is also executive produced by Jeannie Gaffigan. Alex Murray and Sandy Wernick of Brillstein Entertainment Partners also executive produce. JAX Media's Tony Hernandez will executive produce for TV Land.
· "IMPASTOR" - Season Two Premiere on Wednesday, July 13th at 10:30pm ET/PT
"Impastor," a dark comedy from Christopher Vane ("Wings"), stars Michael Rosenbaum as Buddy Dobbs, a slacker on the run from his gambling debt. He seizes an unlikely opportunity to steal a man's identity, and ends up following that man's path and posing as the new gay pastor of a small, tight-knit town. Only time will tell how long he can keep up the façade. Sara Rue, Mircea Monroe, Mike Kosinski and David Rasche also star in the series. "Impastor" is executive produced by Vane and Rosenbaum, along with Eric and Kim Tannenbaum ("Two and a Half Men") and Rob Greenberg ("How I Met Your Mother").
· "TEACHERS" - Season One Finale on Wednesday, March 16th at 10:30pm ET/PT
"Teachers" revolves around a group of elementary school TEACHERS who are trying to mold the minds of America's youth, but don't have their own lives together at all. From Ms. Bennigan awkwardly flirting with the school's resident "hot dad," to Ms. Snap hooking up with the school janitor, and Ms. Watson making her class Facebook-stalk an ex-boyfriend, they're changing the world - perhaps not for the better - one student at a time. "Teachers" is written by and stars The Katydids, who wrote and acted in the popular web series of the same name and are each named a version of "Katie" - Caitlin Barlow, Katy Colloton, Cate Freedman, Kate Lambert, Katie O'Brien and Kathryn Renée Thomas. Along with The Katydids, Alison Brie ("Community") and showrunners Ian Roberts and Jay Martel ("Key and Peele") executive produce the series. Matt Miller and Cap Gun Collective are also executive producers.
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