It is the golden age of comedy now, Mindy Kaling told reporters at NBCU Press Day, because whereas once you used to have to wait 2 1/2 years for Larry David to get around to writing another season of Curb Your Enthusiasm, “now there’s always something happening” in comedy on the TV landscape. She was joined by stars of other Universal TV comedies airing on NBC and elsewhere.
Related: Mindy Kaling Exits UTA
Jenna Elfman is a big fan of single cam comedies, like her new Growing Up Fisher, because “with the Internet … audiences are more savvy, and with a single camera you can home in on nuance more than with multi-cam and capture the smarter side of the story.”
Related: NBC Press Day: Bill Lawrence Talks ‘Undateable’
Brooklyn Nine-Nine star Andy Samberg chimed in: “I was on SNL, which was live, but everything I did was pre-taped, so I was already headed in that direction. Parks and Recreation’s Adam Scott said there a “weird thing” about doing comedy on a multi-cam. “If you don’t say a joke with a particular inflection, the laughs just don’t occur. I did very badly in that format.” But he acknowledged, “Shows like Cheers were able to make it work.” Read More »
1600 Penn’s short run on NBC may be over but Jenna Elfman is staying with the network. The Dharma & Greg alumna has officially been added to the cast of Growing Up Fisher with J.K. Simmons. Replacing Parker Posey on the upcoming midseason comedy, Elfman will play Joyce Fisher, the ex-wife of blind lawyer Mel Fisher. Simmons plays Mel in the show that centers on 11-year old son Henry dealing with his parent’s divorce. Eli Baker plays Henry with Ava Deluca-Verley as his teenage sister Katie. Former Friends star David Schwimmer directed the pilot. Formerly known as The Family Guide, Growing Up Fisher is from Universal Television and Aggregate Films. The series is executive produced by DJ Nash, Jim Garavente and Jason Bateman, who also serves as the show’s narrator. Jenna Elfman is repped by WME and Brillstein Entertainment Partners.
Laura Benanti (The Playboy Club) has landed the female lead opposite Matthew Perry in NBC’s comedy pilot Go On. The single-camera project, written by Scott Silveri and directed by Todd Holland, centers on Ryan (Perry), an irreverent yet charming sportscaster who, trying to move on from a loss, finds surprising solace in the members of his mandatory support group. Tony winner Benanti, repped by Innovative and Brookside Artist Management, will play Lauren, the leader of the Transitions support group who is wound tightly but manages to keep her cool … most of the time. The pilot also co-stars Julie White, Khary Payton, Allison Miller, and Suzy Nakamura.
Dharma & Greg alumna Jenna Elfman is set to co-star as the First Lady opposite Bill Pullman in the NBC comedy pilot 1600 Penn, co-created by Josh Gad, Jason Winer and Jon Lovett and directed by Winer. Produced by 20th TV, it is a dysfunctional family comedy set at the White House, where the president’s (Pullman) out-of-control oldest son (Gad) returns home and becomes not only the family’s biggest liability but also the glue holding everyone together. Elfman will play the street-smart First Lady with working-class roots who is eager to win over her four stepkids, two of them played by Gad and Amara Miller.
Former Dharma & Greg star Jenna Elfman has signed with WME. She was at CAA. Elfman was last seen in the comedy feature Friends with Benefits. She has a major recurring role on the upcoming final season of DirecTV’s Damages and will guest star on the current second season of Showtime’s Shameless. Elfman continues to be repped by Brillstein Entertainment Partners and attorney Jonathan West.
Dean Cain, best known for his starring role on Lois & CLark: The New Adventures Of Superman, has signed with APA. He was with Paradigm. Cain will next play himself in a guest stint on ABC’s midseason comedy Don’t Trust The B—- In Apt. 23. He is also repped by attorney Bob Lange.
Comedy actress Jenna Elfman is taking a dramatic turn with a major recurring role on the upcoming fifth and final season of DirecTV’s Damages, starring Glenn Close and Rose Byrne. The former Dharma & Greg star is joining another major new addition to the show, recently cast Ryan Phillippe. Elfman will play an investment bank employee troubled by her company’s conduct. When she approaches Channing McClaren (Phillippe), the iconoclastic founder of a website devoted to corporate and government transparency, it lays the foundation for the case that will pit Patty Hewes (Close) and Ellen Parsons (Byrne) against each other. Also recently cast as a recurring on Damages‘ fifth season, set to air next year, is John Hannah (Spartacus) as McClaren’s loyal adviser and protector. Elfman, repped by CAA and Brillstein Entertainment, was last seen on the season premiere of Two And A Half Man and in the summer feature comedy Friends With Benefits. She is the latest network TV comedy star to take on a dramatic role on Damages, following Ted Danson, Martin Short and John Goodman.
EXCLUSIVE: Six Feet Under alumna Frances Conroy is set to co-star opposite Jenna Elfman in ABC’s comedy pilot Bad Mom. The project, from ABC Studios and Kapital Entertainment, centers on Julia (Elfman), a mom whose two kids had been raised largely by her mom (Conroy). When her mom decides to get her life back, Julia has to do it alone. Bad Mom was created by British writer-actress-comedienne Sharon Horgan who is also co-starring in the pilot. On ABC, ICM-repped Conroy recently co-starred on drama series Happy Town and did a guest stint on Grey’s Anatomy.
Ashley Judd and Jenna Elfman who had been in negotiations to topline ABC’s action drama series Missing and comedy pilot Bad Mom, respectively, have now closed their deals for the projects. Missing, which eyes an early fall launch, centers on Becca Winstone (Judd), a devoted single mom who, after her 18-year-old son disappears in Italy, takes it upon herself to travel to Europe and track him down. It soon becomes clear that Winstone is a former CIA agent who will stop at nothing to bring her son home alive. Steve Shill is on board to direct multiple episodes of the series, including the opener. He will also executive produce with writer Poirier, Grant Scharbo and Gina Matthews. Production is scheduled to begin late next month in Rome, Vienna and Prague.
Bad Mom, from ABC Studios and Kapital Entertainment, centers on Julia (Elfman), a mom whose two kids had been raised largely by her mom. When her mom decides to get her life back, Julia has to do it alone. Bad Mom was created by British writer-actress-comedienne Sharon Horgan who is executive producing with Aaron Kaplan as well as co-starring. Jen Crittenden and Gabrielle Allan recently joined the pilot as executive producers/showrunners.
Jenna Elfman is in negotiations for the lead in ABC’s single-camera comedy pilot Bad Mom. The project, from ABC Studios and Kapital Entertainment, centers on Julia (Elfman), a single mom whose two kids had been raised largely by her mom. When her mom decides to get her life back, Julia has to do it alone. Bad Mom was created by British writer-actress-comedienne Sharon Horgan who is executive producing with Aaron Kaplan.
Former Dharma & Greg star Elfman headlined CBS’ multicamera comedy Accidentally on Purpose last season. The actress, repped by CAA and Brillstein Entertainment, next co-stars in the feature Friends with Benefits.