Jenny Bicks, formerly a writer on HBO’s long-running Sex And The City and creator of ABC’s short-lived Men In Trees, is the cancer survivor who runs The Big C, created by Darlene Hunt. It stars Laura Linney as a teacher, wife, and mother living with a diagnosis of a life-threatening melanoma. It joins Showtime’s other dramedies likely to compete with more traditional sitcoms and hour-longs for this year’s Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series. Bicks talks with Deadline TV Contributor Diane Haithman about her reaction to positive Emmy buzz and cancer as a laughing matter:
DEADLINE: How did you become involved in this show?
JENNY BICKS: I read the pilot scripts of The Big C because I shared the agency that created the script with Darlene Hunt and really loved the writing on it. I had cancer myself, and I was really impressed and kind of jealous that it had found the exact right way of talking about cancer in this darkly comedic way. Darlene and I sat down and I told her I liked the show, and it turned out they needed someone to come in and retool the pilot and recast some roles. And then I stayed around to do the show.
DEADLINE: When you give a character 18 months to live, don’t you also shorten the life of your series?
BICKS: Well, we’ve never said that she’s going to die at the end, and I don’t say that to be cute. We have to be very aware of what’s going on in the medical community. She has melanoma, and as soon as we went on the air, … Read More »
The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. once again went for a mix of critical darlings and pop culture standouts in its TV nominations, with stronger emphasis on popular shows this year. The freshman series that landed first best series noms were the praised HBO drama Boardwalk Empire and Showtime comedy The Big C as well as AMC’s hugely popular zombie drama The Walking Dead. Speaking of popular, Fox’s red-hot Glee was the most nominated program for a second straight year with 5 noms. And CBS hit The Big Bang Theory broke into the best comedy series field, the first multi-camera comedy to do so in 6 years. FX’s highly rated edgy biker drama Sons of Anarchy landed its first mainstream award nomination, a best drama actress nom for Katey Sagal. And two popcorn series, USA’s Covert Affairs and CBS’ Hawaii Five-O, landed surprise nominations, best actress for Piper Perabo and best supporting actor for Scott Caan.
CBS’ The Big Bang Theory scored its first 2 Golden Globe nominations, best comedy series and best lead actor in a comedy series for Emmy winner Jim Parsons. How significant was the best series nom? The last time a multi-camera comedy landed one was Will & Grace 6 years ago. HFPA traditionally overlooks traditional sitcoms for edgier single-camera fare. That especially applies to CBS’ popularmulti-camera comedies . Everybody Loves Raymond, which won 2 best comedy series Emmys among a truckload of other awards, was never nominated for a Golden Globe in the best comedy series category and only landed 2 Globe noms and no wins for star Ray Romano for its entire run. Returning in the best series field, which was expanded to 6 slots this year, are last year’s winner Glee, current Emmy winner Modern Family and previous Globe and Emmy winner 30 Rock. Out are The Office and Entourage, in are Big Bang and 2 Showtime series, Nurse Jackie and The Big C. Showtime nabbed the most series nominations of any network, broadcast or cable, 8. HBO had the most nominations overall, 12. The comedy series acting categories remained virtually unchanged from last year with only one tweak on each side: Laura Linney of the Big C subbing for Courteney Cox, and Parsons taking over for David Duchovny. Returning nominees include Toni Collette of United States of Tara, Edie Falco of Nurse Jackie, Tina Fey of 30 Rock, Lea Michele of Glee, Alec Baldwin of 30 Rock, Steve Carell of The Office, Thomas Jane of Hung and Matthew Morrison of Glee. No love again for NBC’s Parks & Recreation and Community or HBO’s Bored to Death and Eastbound & Down, none of which scored a nom. Read More »
While his My Boys co-stars Jordana Spiro and Kyle Howard had to pull out of their regular roles on new NBC series Love Bites and Perfect Couples because of their commitment to the TBS comedy, Reid Scott quietly booked a heavily recurring role on Showtime’s upcoming dark comedy series The Big C. The Sony/Original Film-produced show stars Linney as Cathy, a repressed suburban wife and mother who reclaims her life after a terminal cancer diagnosis. Scott, repped by Gersh and Impression, plays Cathy’s oncologist Dr. Todd who has lots of training and intellect but lacks life or professional experience. Scott is doing The Big C with TBS’ blessing. What also helped him do the series while still under contract on My Boys is that his role on The Big C is technically recurring. Additionally, the smaller size of The Big C‘s order – 13 episodes – and its production schedule – it is now filming for an Aug. 16 premiere – would make Scott available in the unlikely event that My Boys is renewed for another season.