Yesterday we relayed the news that Comedy Central has ordered 10 episodes of a new sitcom starring Jon Heder (from Napoleon Dynamite — remember him?). The new series, slated to be written by Will Ferrell and longtime collaborator Adam McKay — will premiere in 2010. If the series proves to be a hit, Comedy Central will order 90 more episodes, reports Variety.
This isn’t Ferrell and Heder’s first collaboration — they faced off as male figure skaters in 2007’s Blades of Glory — but it is the latter actor’s first big leap into the sitcom world (he previously guest-starred in a 2008 episode of My Name is Earl). In his new series, Heder will play an unemployed IT worker who leaves the city to move back in with his family.
Considering Ferrell and McKay’s Funny or Die has been a viral hit since it launched in April 2007 and the fact that Heder still has a cult following from Napoleon Dynamite, this project could be a coup for Comedy Central. But, of course, there’s the chance that the project could also flop. Heder hasn’t been involved in a major project since 2007, long enough to fall off the pop-culture radar for anyone beyond the most die-hard Napoleon Dynamite fans. And in the wake of Land of the Lost‘s poor box-office showing, Ferrell himself seems like less of a sure bet than he might have a year or two ago. (See my colleague Chris Nashawaty’s recent PopWatch item: Is America over Will Ferrell?) What’s your prediction, PopWatchers? Will Heder’s project be the next great cable sitcom, or go the way of Lil’ Bush? More important, will you tune in?