Matthew Perry is shopping a new single-camera comedy to the broadcast networks this week. According to The Hollywood Reporter, he plans to star in, co-write, and executive produce the untitled show about “a self-involved manager of a second-rate sports arena who begins to re-evaluate his life on his 40th birthday.” Perry, who recently turned 40, conceived the idea. (Which also explains why he was drawn to the Zac Efron do-over comedy 17 Again?) Does this sound like a pilot a network should greenlight? Before we take it to a vote after the jump, let’s break it down.
He’ll pen the pilot script with Alex Barnow and Marc Firek, a duo whose most recent credit is Fox’s ‘Til Death. Worrisome, but then again, last spring, Showtime passed on a pilot Perry had cowritten with the brilliant Peter Tolan (Rescue Me). He’ll share exec producing duties with Thomas Schlamme (Sports Night, The West Wing, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip), who’ll also direct the pilot, and Jamie Tarses, the former network suit credited with developing Friends. Good. He’ll play that self-involved manager re-evaluating his life, which means mild misery and extreme sarcasm — excellent.
I’d greenlight it on one condition: he, his fellow writers and exec producers take Ron Shelton (Bull Durham and Tin Cup) to lunch to discuss the second-rate sports arena angle. If he’s game, I’d bring him on as a consultant. Your call?
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