According to The Hollywood Reporter, CBS has picked up and secured pilot commitment for Open Books, a sitcom centering on a book editor and her pals. The script for the sitcom, written by Will & Grace veteran Gail Lerner, is inspired by Lerner’s own experience as a temp at a publishing company. (Lerner also sought inspiration from her sister, Betsey, who was also an editor for 15 years.)
Ever since watching Elaine Benes slave away for Mr. Lippman on Seinfeld, I’ve been yearning for a good publishing comedy. (This summer’s The Proposal doesn’t really count.) But considering the state of sitcoms and the publishing world, would anyone else watch? Lerner herself sort of addresses the issue in her interview with Hollywood Reporter: “Publishing is a lot like sitcoms. Although both are supposedly dying, that only makes people more passionate about creating the next great novel or show.”
Of course, that’s assuming Open Books actually is the great new show. With any luck, it’ll be better than Emily’s Reasons Why Not, Heather Graham’s 2006 sitcom about a self-help author that was notoriously canceled after only one episode aired. (And we can’t forget about another short-lived publishing sitcom, last year’s The Return of Jezebel James.) I, for one, am optimistic about Open Books, providing it stays away from sappy romantic storylines (one of Reason‘s downfalls). After all, Lerner is the co-executive producer of Ugly Betty, so she’s proven she can deliver a stellar workplace comedy.
Would you tune into a show about the publishing industry? And are you, like me, glad to see a TV show that doesn’t center on the magazine world?
Photo credit: Everett Collection