EXCLUSIVE: In a rare cross-border network collaboration at the development stage, the U.S.’ ABC and Canada’s Shaw Media have bought a half-hour comedy from Canadian writer-actor-comedian Bob Martin and former EntertainmentOne executive-turned-producer Noreen Halpern. The untitled project, a co-production between ABC and Shaw, is about a cartoonist who struggles to reconcile the idealized married life depicted in his comic strip with his own life — one that is populated by ex-spouses, children from three different marriages, and a wife who earns far more money than he does. Martin will write the script and executive produce with Halpern.
Martin, repped by repped by CAA and Brillstein Entertainment Partners, starred in and co-wrote the Broadway musical Drowsy Chaperone, sharing a best book for a musical Tony with Don McKellar and getting a lead actor Tony nomination. In Canada, Martin was the co-creator with McKellar and star of CBC’s Michael Tuesdays & Thursdays and also co-created the Movie Central/Movie Network dark comedy Slings And Arrows, which aired in the U.S. on Sundance Channel. This marks the first major U.S. sale for Halpern since she exited eOne in February. As President of Dramatic Programming, Halpern oversaw all of eOne’s scripted series including Rookie Blue, which is co-produced by Shaw Media and airs on ABC and Shaw’s Global TV Network.