EXCLUSIVE: ABC has put in development My Problem With Women, a comedy based on the popular Peruvian series of the same name. The project hails from Jason Gann who knows a thing or two about successful U.S. adaptions of international comedy formats. Aussie Gann, co-creator/star of the Australian comedy series Wilfred, also toplines and co-executive produces the FX version, which is heading into its fourth and final season. Gann will write and executive produce My Problem With Women with Peter Huyck and Alex Gregory (Frasier), who will serve as co-showrunners. Chris Philip (Siberia) also is an exec producer, Jay Weisleder a co-exec producer and Miki Ivcher an associate producer for ABC Studios, Sierra/Engine Television and Frecuencia Latina International. The original series, produced by Jaime Carbajal and created by Frank Perez Garland, Christian Buckley and Paul Vegae, follows the adventures of a thirtysomething bachelor who begins seeing a therapist in an attempt to understand why all of his romantic relationships fail (watch a subtitled trailer below). The format, controlled by FLI, has also been produced in Argentina, Israel, and Cyprus, and is currently in production in Chile. WME and Coast Road Media negotiated the deal on behalf of Sierra/Engine Television and FLI. Gann, Huyck and Gregory are repped by WME; Gann is managed by Prospect Park.
FX Networks has picked up comedy series Wilfred for a fourth and final season of 10 episodes. The series, an adaptation of Jason Gann and Adam Zwar’s Australian comedy of same name, will move to FXX. The series, in which Elijah Wood stars, as a young man struggling to make his way in the world and Gann plays the neighbor’s irrepressibly brave, crude, and surly dog, averaged just under 1 million viewers in Season 3, and 655,000 Adults 18-49 per week on a first-run basis.
Originally adapted for FX by David Zuckerman (Family Guy, American Dad, King Of The Hill), it’s currently exec produced by Zuckerman along with Gann, Reed Agnew and Eli Jorné, Rich Frank, and Jeff Kwatinetz of Prospect Park, Randall Einhorn, and Joe Connor and Ken Connor of Renegade, producers of the Australian version of the series. Einhorn also serves as director. Around this time last year, when FX Networks was negotiating to bring the show back for a 13-episode Season 3, Zuckerman decided to step back from showrunning, and Agnew and Jorné, who’d been with the series since its start, were named showrunners for the most recent season of the comedy produced by FX Productions.
Elijah Wood may have been physically absent from Comic-Con, but he made an appearance nonetheless via satellite from LA to front a lively Wilfred panel presentation moderated by Deadline’s own Dominic Patten. Wood, who’s currently filming the rabid kids horror comedy Cooties, joined a Wilfred crew including creator/star Jason Gann, exec producer David Zuckerman, writer Eli Jorne, and co-stars Fiona Gubelmann and Dorian Brown. Gann co-created the Australian original of the same name which ran for two seasons. The US version debuted in 2011 on FX and is currently in its third season with Wood starring as Ryan, a young man who attempts suicide before tending to his neighbor’s dog (Gann, who plays the eponymous Wilfred in a dog suit). Gann said he only now feels like they’ve finally broken through in Wilfred’s development. “The character now it feels like we found him and it doesn’t always have to be dog stuff,” he said. “It’s the subtleties in these dog-isms – and also, he’s just Wilfred. This is the first year when we were shooting that I thought this character could continue. It’s not just dog jokes.” Psychological questions were top of mind for fans in a Q&A session, where writer Jorne played coy with answers. “Is [Ryan] getting better or is he getting worse? We always want to …
On the heels of FX renewing its comedy Wilfred for a third season, Wilfred producer FX Prods has inked an overall deal with the series’ executive producer/director Randall Einhorn. The pact locks in a key player on the show following the recent departure of executive producer/showrunner David Zuckerman. (Writer-producers Reed Agnew and Eli Jorné are taking the reins of the comedy in Season 3.
After lengthy negotiations, FX has renewed comedy Wilfred for a third season with a 13-episode order. The pickup was never in doubt, but it took longer than usual as FX had been trying to hammer out a new deal with the series’ showrunner David Zuckerman. (Most FX series have their showrunners locked in for the first two years only). In the end, Zuckerman, who adapted Wilfred for American television and has served as executive producer and showrunner for the first two seasons, closed a pact to continue as an executive producer but opted to step down as showrunner. He will still be involved in the show on a daily basis, likely not full-time.
Adam Buckman is a contributor to AwardsLine.
Viewers have embraced a certain degree of raunch in their TV comedies, but the Emmys have not quite caught up with them.
Though there have been exceptions in recent years – with nominations and scattered awards going to some of TV’s more adult-oriented comedy series, such as Curb Your Enthusiasm or Nurse Jackie – the lion’s share of Emmy attention continues to be paid to mainstream comedies on broadcast television, even though some of them, too, have pushed the content envelope in recent seasons.
Producers of some of TV’s raunchier comedies say they’d love Emmy recognition, but they’re not holding their breath. “I think it would be a huge honor obviously to have that sort of recognition,” says Danny McBride, co-creator, executive producer and star of the decidedly off-color Eastbound & Down on HBO. “Eastbound & Down is of a very crude nature, and the comic sensibility is dark. I don’t think you really see shows of that nature awarded in that way,” he said.
FX is the latest network to offer a preview of a series ahead of its premiere. In the vein of what its sibling Fox did with New Girl before its launch last year, FX will preview its breakout hit comedy series Wilfred across multiple platforms over a two-week period beginning June 14 in advance of the series’ Season 2 premiere June 28. But unlike New Girl and other shows that have done such sampling, the episode that will be made available beforehand will not be the season premiere but a special never-before-aired preview episode guest starring Robin Williams. Written by series developer David Zuckerman and directed by Randall Einhorn, the episode, titled “Progress”, features Ryan (Elijah Wood) ignoring Wilfred’s (Jason Gann) advice, which creates an existential crisis for both of them.
Related: WME Signs ‘Wilfred’s Jason Gann
Starting June 14, the episode will roll out on video-on-demand through the network’s cable, satellite and telco distribution partners, online on Hulu and Yahoo TV, as well as FXNetworks.com and the Wilfred Facebook page. iTunes, which played a major part in New Girl‘s pre-premiere sampling, won’t be part of the Wilfred preview, which will conclude with the airing of the special episode on FX on June 21, following a rerun of Wilfred’s Season 1 finale.
EXCLUSIVE: Jason Gann, co-creator and star of FX’s breakout comedy series Wilfred, has signed with WME. He was at ICM. On Wilfreld, Gann plays the title character, a cigarette/pot-smoking dog who befriends a neighbor played by Elijah Wood. In addition to co-creating and starring in the FX series, Australian Gann also co-created and played Wilfred in the original Australian version of the show. Gann is currently wrapping the second season of the FX series, which will premiere June 28 following the debut of Charlie Sheen’s Anger Management. Gann continues to be managed by Jeff Kwatinetz at Prospect Park.
TV Castings: Camilla Luddington To Recur On ‘True Blood, Allison Mack On ‘Wilfred’, Constance Zimmer On ‘House Of Cards’
EXCLUSIVE: Camilla Luddington, who portrayed Kate Middleton in the Lifetime movie William and Kate, has landed a recurring role on the upcoming season of HBO’s vampire drama True Blood, which will have a special focus on fairies. Luddington will play Claudette, one of Claude’s (Giles Matthey) many sisters, who gives Sookie insight into what it means to be a faerie. The actress, repped by Progressive Artists, Main Title and attorney Scott Whitehead, most recently did a nine-episode on Showtime’s Californication, which wraps up a week from Sunday.
Smallville alumna Allison Mack has been tapped for a major recurring on the FX comedy series Wilfred. On the show, about Ryan (Elijah Wood) and his relationship with his neighbor’s dog Wilfred (Jason Gann), Mack will play Ryan’s new love interest, an attractive and edgy biochemist. This marks Mack’s first television role since Smallville where she also directed 2 episodes. She has since focused on theater, workshopping the Bobby Lopez musical Up Here with Josh Radnor, starring in a couple of off-Broadway productions and participating in The Public Theatre’s Shakespeare Lab. Mack is with Innovative Artists and Anonymous.
Constance Zimmer (Entourage) has booked a major recurring role in David Fincher’s Netflix drama series House Of Cards, a political thriller starring Kevin Spacey as Rep. Frank Underwood, the Majority Whip of the U.S. House of Representatives …
EXCLUSIVE: These days, Jeff Kwatinetz’s Prospect Park is known mostly for its headline-making deal to continue to produce ABC’s canceled soaps All My Children and One Life To Live. But the new daytime player has quietly been building a primetime presence since the company’s 2008 launch and is now making a push to expand it, with former ABC exec Josh Barry recently joining Paul Frank as a partner in the TV division. Prospect Park has set up seven series projects at networks and studios around town, all executive produced by Kwatinetz, Barry, Frank and his father, Prospect Park partner Rich Frank, as well as the projects’ writers. So far, the company has had a perfect pilot-to-series batting average, with both of its pilots, USA Network’s Royal Pains and FX’s Wilfred, going to series that have become breakout hits for their networks. Wilfred was renewed for a second season last month, while Royal Pains was picked up for Season 4 yesterday.
One of Prospect Park’s new projects reunites the company with FX and Wilfred co-creator and star Jason Gann. GILF, which will be written by Gann, centers on an adopted man who, at the urging of his wife, seeks out his biological mother, discovers she’s a former porn star, invites her to move in, and forces his family to deal with the unpredictable consequences. Here is a list of Prospect Park’s other projects in development:
FX has renewed three comedy series. Elijah Wood starrer Wilfred, which has become the highest-rated first-season comedy on the network with a cumulative 5 million viewers a week, has been picked up a second season of 13 episodes. Louie, which just landed an Emmy nomination for star Louis CK and has averaged 3 million viewers a week, has been renewed for a third season of 13 episodes. Meanwhile, veteran It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia has been renewed for two more seasons — Seasons 8 and 9 — to become the longest-running live-action comedy on basic cable. The network also has an option for a 10th season, FX president John Landgraf said, adding that the show seems to have gotten a second wind in Season 7. Additionally, FX Prods. has signed a three-year exclusive deal with RCG, the production company of Sunny masterminds Rob McElhenney, Charlie Day and Glenn Howerton. I hear the deal is worth $40 million-$50 million for all services. “With Sunny, FX and FX Prods. and RCG reinvented the production model for television comedies,” Landgraf said. “In embracing a low‑cost production model and taking less money upfront, Rob, Glenn, and Charlie were afforded more creative freedom, a true financial partnership, and less pressure on ratings so there was time to let the show find an audience. Sunny not only became a hit, but the cornerstone of FX’s successful comedy brand, establishing a production model that has become favored by many in the creative community and has led to Archer, Louie, The League and Wilfred.” In addition to Sunny, RCG is involved in the new CBS comedy series How To Be a Gentleman, created by and starring Sunny player David Hornsby, and has two comedy projects in the works: Fox’s Living Loaded and FX’s animated Townies.
Deadline Comic-Con television correspondent Gary Hodges files:
If there’s a more bizarre and unconventional show than FX’s original series Wilfred at Comic-Con, I’m really not sure what it’d be. For those unfamiliar: An American version of an Australian show by the same name, Wilfred is about a young former lawyer named Ryan (played by Elijah Wood) who, unsuccessful and near suicidal, forms a quasi-friendship with his neighbor’s dog, Wilfred… whom he sees as a rude, maniacal Australian man in a dog costume (Jason Gann). Both Wood and Gann were on the panel, joined by the two female leads (Fiona Gubelmann, who plays Wilfred’s owner, and Dorian Brown, Ryan’s sister) and producers David Zuckerman and Randall Einhorn. Wood was the most energetic and chatty of the lot, and seems to have quite a following among the female geek population. More than once a female attendee expressing her admiration (“You’re sexy!” one cried), followed by squeals of agreement from the rest and a few awkward Lord of the Rings-related questions. Everyone involved seems to know the show is an odd duck, and thus faces an uphill climb. Zuckerman admitted: “This is a high-concept show, and high-concept shows generally have a short lifespan.” Admittedly, watching Gann copulate with a stuffed giraffe wasn’t really the best example of high-concept, but overall the show is challenging in its own curious way.
They hope for a second season; …
Deadline Comic-Con TV Contributor Gary Hodges reports:
While a studio presence for movies is shaping up to be a little thin at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con (save for notable exceptions like the Cowboys and Aliens premiere and a rumored Steven Spielberg pop-in), the television side of things doesn’t seem bad at all. In fact, it already is looking pretty meaty, promising to keep small-screen aficionados (and this Deadline writer) hustling if they want to see every panel the convention has to offer. The announcements are still rolling in and the official schedule is probably still a couple weeks away, but here are a few of the juicier tidbits about what to expect at the July 21-24 event that we’ve heard so far.
20th Century Fox has announced that it will be promoting at least 13 shows this year with panels, from the familiar (Bones, Family Guy, The Simpsons and Glee, all with their respective casts) to a handful of new offerings. Probably the one garnering the most interest is Terra Nova, the sci-fi drama that boasts Spielberg as an executive producer and a ballsy commitment from Fox, which has already ordered 13 episodes (said to cost about $4 million apiece). The show should find a receptive audience at the convention, as it tells the story of how Earth in the year 2149 is apparently so bad, time-traveling to 85 million years ago to be chased and eaten by expensive CGI dinosaurs is considered an improvement. Another new Fox offering that’s interesting and destined to be fodder for the talking heads is Allen Gregory, an animated series about the titular precocious 7-year-old boy (voiced by Judd Apatow-darling Jonah Hill) and his gay dads. There’s also an animated Napoleon Dynamite series on the way, with the film’s original cast returning to do the voice work, and Awake, a sci-fi drama about a detective (Jason Isaacs) who, after a car accident, finds he can occupy two parallel realities: one where his wife died in the crash, and a second where it was his son who perished. No word yet on which reality has Fox canceling every other new series because they poured all their money into Terra Nova’s gaping prehistoric mouth.
Warner Bros will also be there in force, with a 3,000-square-foot booth on the show floor and 16 shows in their lineup. Most of the shows are old standbys; then again, most are also beloved by the average convention-goer. The Big Bang Theory cast is always welcomed with enthusiasm, making their scheduled appearance a no-brainer. Likewise Chuck, Fringe, Nikita, Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries and curiously apostrophe-free Childrens Hospital all will have no problem finding happy, receptive attendees to fill seats for a chance to glimpse their favorite star in the flesh. As for new fare, the enigmatic drama Alcatraz opens present-day with 302 people — wardens and prisoners — suddenly reappearing in the infamous prison, 50 years after their mysterious disappearance. It also stars Lost alumnus Jorge Garcia as a “hippie geek” Alcatraz expert, a challenging-sounding role that I hope he’s up for. Person of Interest is a sci-fi series about a computer program that predicts future crime victims (sounding a bit like Minority Report, but minus the precognitive crack babies who sit in a bathtub all day) and the former CIA agent (Jim Caviezel) who is tasked with trying to solve the crimes. Lastly, WB will roll out The Secret Circle, a young-adult fantasy-horror-romance series based on the book of the same name. In the series, teenaged Cassie (played by Britt Robertson) discovers she comes from a family of witches. Oh, and love; she also discovers love.
FX’s summer lineup has been set, with the new original comedy Wilfred, starring Elijah Wood and Jason Gann, debuting on Thursday, June 23 at 10 PM. A pair of returning series also have dates: Season 2 of Louie will return on June 23 at 10:30 PM, and Rescue Me returns for its final season on Tuesday, July 12 at 10 PM.
EXCLUSIVE: Anna Chlumsky is set to co-star opposite Julia Louis-Dreyfus in HBO’s comedy pilot Veep. In a recasting, Dorian Brown (ABC Family’s Roommates) has landed a lead on FX’s new comedy series Wilfred starring Elijah Wood, while Kelly Rowan (The O.C.) has gotten a lead role in the TNT drama pilot Perception.
Veep, from British comedian, writer and director Armando Iannucci, centers on former Senator Selina Meyer (Louis-Dreyfus) who becomes Vice President. Chlumsky, repped by Innovative and Liebman Entertainment, will play her responsible and insecure chief of staff Amy. This is the second DC-set pilot for Chlumsky. Last year, she co-starred in CBS’ House Rules, playing an aide to the Speaker of the House. She also co-starred in Iannucci’s politically themed 2009 feature In the Loop.
Wilfred, based on the acclaimed Australian series of the same name, revolves around a guy, Ryan (Wood), the girl next door (Fiona Gubelmann), and mixed-breed dog, Wilfred (co-creator Jason Gann). Brown, repped by Domain and and McKeon/Myones, will play Ryan’s controlling and condescending older sister, an obstetrician. She replaces Andrea Savage who played the role on the pilot.
Perception centers on Dr. Geoffrey Pierce (Eric McCormack), an eccentric and brilliant university professor in neuropsychiatry who helps the FBI solve complex cases. Rowan will play Pierce’s best friend and intellectual equal.
EXCLUSIVE: Fiona Gubelmann has landed the female lead opposite Jason Gann and Elijah Wood in FX’s comedy pilot Wilfred, while Malcolm-Jamal Warner has been tapped for the male lead opposite Tracee Ellis Ross in the BET comedy pilot Reed Between the Lines.
Based on the Australian series of the same name, Wilfred revolves around a guy, Ryan (Wood), the girl next door/potential love interest (Gubelmann), and her mixed-breed dog Wilfred (Gann).
Reed centers on Dr. Carla Reed (Ross), a busy psychiatrist, wife and mom struggling to balance her job and her happy but chaotic homelife. The Cosby Show alum Warner is expected to play her husband.
Lord of the Rings star Elijah Wood is set to make his series debut with a lead role opposite Jason Gann in the FX comedy pilot Wilfred, which is based on the acclaimed Australian series of the same name, co-created and starring Gann. David Zuckerman, who wrote the adapted pilot script and serves as executive producer, describes Wilfred as comedy “about a guy, Ryan (Wood), the girl next door, and mixed-breed dog, Wilfred (Gann), who is part Labrador retriever and part Russell Crowe on a bender.” Randall Einhorn is directing the pilot, which will be filmed this summer. Rich Frank, Paul Frank, Jeff Kwatinetz, Joe Connor and Ken Conner also exec produce, with Gann serving as co-exec producer for FX Prods. Wood, who will next be seen this fall in The Romantics and has lent his voice to Happy Feet 2, is repped by WME and Brillstein Partners.