EXCLUSIVE: I’ve just learned that one of the longtime writers and producers of Late Show With David Letterman, Matt Roberts, is becoming the new head writer effective immediately. The previous head writers Justin and Eric Stangel will remain as writers and producers with the show but also get a fat new multiyear development deal with Worldwide Pants, the production company run by Letterman and Rob Burnett. ”The Stangel brothers are going to remain with the show as part of the deal because we need them,” Rob Burnett just told me. ”These guys are as good as it gets.” The twosome have had an unusally long and successful 14-year run as Letterman’s head writers and now will turn a lot of their attention to coming up with TV shows in any format for Worldwide Pants. “For people like this super valuable to the show, this deal keeps these guys from walking,” Burnett said. He especially wanted to ensure the pair were signed to a deal in order not to repeat what happened when Letterman writers Carter Bays and Craig Thomas, who walked out the door of Worldwide Pants and created the long-running and profitable franchise How I Met Your Mother. I happen to think the Stangel Brothers are hilarious (remember their online antics with Bill Scheft during the writers strike?) and look forward to their scripted and unscripted pitches. “Whatever they want to do,” Burnett told me.
EXCLUSIVE: David Letterman Shakeup In ‘Late Show’ Head Writers As Stangel Brothers Snag Multi-Year Development Deal
Worldwide Pants, Rob Burnett and he and his partner Jon Beckerman’s B&B Productions have acquired screen rights to The Revised Fundamentals Of Caregiving, the Jonathan Evison novel. Burnett, the longtime exec producer of Late Show With David Letterman, will adapt the novel and direct. Burnett made his directing debut on We Made This Movie.
Evison is also the author of The New York Times bestseller West Of Here.
The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving tells the story of Benjamin Benjamin, a man who has lost virtually everything — his wife, his family, his home, his livelihood. With few options, Ben enrolls in a night class called “The Fundamentals of Caregiving” taught in the basement of a local church. There Ben is instructed in the art of inserting catheters and avoiding liability, about professionalism, and how to keep physical and emotional distance between client and provider. Assigned to care for a teen patient, Ben realizes his training has done little to prepare him for the realities of caregiving. Ultimately, the two embark upon a wild road trip across the American West and a new camaraderie replaces the traditional boundary between patient and caregiver.