EXCLUSIVE: Dakota Johnson has landed the lead in Fox’s comedy pilot Ned Fox Is My Manny. The single-camera project centers on an uptight single mother (Johnson) whose aimless brother (Nat Faxon) moves in to help raise her daughter (Maggie Jones). Johnson replaces Saturday Night Live‘s Abby Elliott, who was originally cast in the role but was released after the table read. Interestingly, at 24, Elliott was considered young for the part (it was written as a 26-year-old), and Johnson is two years younger at 22, but I hear she impressed the producers with her audition.
This marks the TV debut for Johnson, the daughter of Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith. Johnson has quickly been building a feature resume — she was in The Social Network and the Sundance comedy Goats, and she co-stars in the current box-office champ 21 Jump Street. The actress, repped by WME and Untitled, will next be seen in the Nick Stoller/Judd Apatow comedy The Five-Year Engagement. Johnson is the second daughter of A-list actors to land the lead of a pilot this season; Meryl Streep’s daughter Mamie Gummer is the star of the CW medical drama First Cut. Meanwhile, Johnson’s mom, Melanie Griffith, also toplines a pilot, Lifetime’s This American Housewife.