EXCLUSIVE: Nickelodeon is finalizing a deal for a pilot order to a comedy starring iCarly‘s Jerry Trainor for its Nick At Nite nighttime block. Titled Wendell & Vinnie, the multi-camera project was created by Emmy-winning writer-producer Jay Kogen (Frasier). It stars Trainor as Vinnie, an irresponsible goofball who becomes the guardian to his conservative genius 12-year old nephew. Kogen is executive producing the pilot with Aaron Kaplan (Terra Nova, GCB). While there has been speculation that the upcoming season of long-running comedy iCarly will be its last, Nickelodeon has not made a final decision yet and Trainor, repped by ICM and the Burstein Co., could perceivable do both series. He also voices the lead character in an animated Nickelodeon series, T.U.F.F. Puppy.
This is the second original pilot for Nick At Nite, following the October pickup of Daddy’s Home starring Scott Baio. Like Daddy’s Home, Wendell & Vinnie was greenlighted with a star already attached. For Kaplan this is the 13th pilot order since he launched his indie company Kapital Entertainment less than 3 years ago. Nick at Nite currently features reruns of Friends, My Wife & Kids, George Lopez and The Nanny. Kogen is with Paradigm.
Now maybe the Writers Guild’s definition of a “gentlemen’s club” isn’t a strip club although that’s how I and everybody else would interpret that phrase. But the WGA Foundation’s “Sale of Invaluable Experiences” which ends today at 5 PM includes this bizarre offering: comedy writer/producer Jay Kogen (The Simpsons, Everybody Loves Raymond, George Lopez, Frazier, Malcolm In The Middle) ”will take you go-karting or to a Gentlemen’s Club of your choice. Be brave, it could be the most fun you’ve ever had…well, the funniest, to be sure. Join Jay for an eventful evening.” Like Hollywood isn’t misogynist enough.
EXCLUSIVE: Disney XD has added another pilot to its growing development slate. The boy-centric cable channel has greenlighted Pack of Wolves, a comedy from writer Jason Ward (Living with Fran). Ward and Jay Kogen (Frasier) are executive producing the project, which centers on the Oppenheimer siblings (Edison, Darwin, and Albert). They are being raised by their single dad, a brilliant professor, who rents their extra bedroom to a guy named Timberwolf (aka the Wolf), a rogue spy looking for a place to lie low. The Wolf proceeds to teach the kids how to apply spy tactics to their teen lives in the suburbs. Disney XD has been relying mostly on broadcast sitcom veterans for its development. The channel recently handed out a series order to multi-camera comedy Wasabi Warriors created by Jim O’Doherty (Grounded for Life). And in May, it ordered a comedy pilot from That ’70s Show alumni Mark Brazill, Chris Peterson and Bryan Moore. Disney XD just posted the most-watched November in the channel’s 10+ year history, posting double-digit year-to-year increases in total day.