CBS’s has greenlighted to pilot an untitled multi-camera comedy written by Louis CK and Spike Feresten, an ensemble of young people trying to achieve their creative dreams in these tough financial times. The pickup caps a remarkable comeback for the project 13 years ago after it was first written. At the time, Louie was a standup comedian and Feresten was a writer on Seinfeld. Having met earlier in their careers as writers on The Late Show With Letterman, Louis CK and Feresten came up with an idea for a comedy series titled Boomtown, which landed at CBS through Louis CK’s development deal with the network and Castle Rock. Back then the characters were envisioned as Louie CK and his friends. When the network passed on the script, it was sent into pilot oblivion.
Fast-forward to last year when BermanBraun executive Gene Stein, who worked at CBS at the time Boomtown was in development there, came across a copy of the script and decided to try and resurrect the project. Stein approached Louis CK, now the creator and star of a successful comedy on FX, and Feresten, who did a stint as a late-night talk show host on Fox, with the idea, and they agreed to update the script if there was a buyer. In October, the original Boomtown script was taken out. Fittingly, the project’s original home, CBS, offered to buy it right away and proceeded to order a rewrite. Louis CK and Feresten, who penned the revised version of their script, are executive producing the pilot with Stein, Gail Berman and Lloyd Braun. BermanBraun and Universal TV, where the company has a deal, will produce with CBS TV Studios. This is the latest project to get a second and even third chance so far this pilot season. Michael McDonald wrote the script of NBC’s futuristic drama pilot Beautiful People 10 years ago. Rockne S. O’Bannon first developed CW’s Cult six years ago when it went to pilot at the WB but became a casualty of the UPN/WB merger. And Will & Grace creators David Kohan and Max Mutchnick are taking a third stab at a comedy based on their friendship with a pilot at CBS this year following pilots at CBS in 2007 and ABC in 2008. This marks the first outside pilot order for Universal TV since it re-configured itself as a full-fledged studio last summer. Louis CK and CAA-repped Feresten are managed by 3 Arts.