Melissa Leo stars as a club owner

By Dan Snierson
January 12, 2016 at 12:00 PM EST
Mathieu Young/Showtime

Showtime is shining a spotlight on the L.A. comedy scene in the 1970s with the help of Jim Carrey. 

The network announced at the TCA Winter Press Tour on Tuesday that it has ordered the one-hour comedy series I’m Dying Up Here, which is being executive produced by the stand-up-turned-movie-star. Based on William Knoedelseder’s book with the same title that focused on rising comedians in the ’70s, the show explores “inspired and damaged psyches that are required to stand alone in front of an audience and make them laugh,” according to Showtime.

There are some recognizable faces in the ensemble cast, including Oscar winner Melissa Leo (The Fighter), who stars as a brash comedy club owner named “Goldie,” who mentors her comedians with tough love. The club’s standups are played by Ari Graynor (For a Good Time Call), Andrew Santino (Mixology), RJ Cyler (Me and Earl and the Dying Girl), Erik Griffin (Workaholics), and Stephen Guarino (Happy Endings). Clark Duke (Hot Tub Time Machine) and Michael Angarano (The Knick) star as Boston comedians who relocate to L.A. with big dreams.   

The list of guest stars includes Alfred Molina, Cathy Moriarty, Sebastian Stan, Robert Forster, Jon Daly, Al Madrigal, Dylan Baker, Brianne Howey, and Ginger Gonzaga.

I’m Dying Up Here, which will begin shooting in L.A. this fall, is being written and executive-produced by Dave Flebotte, whose credits include Masters of Sex and Will & Grace

The news comes five months after Showtime announced that it had ordered the pilot for the series.