EXCLUSIVE: FX Networks has given a pilot order to Man Seeking Woman, a half-hour comedy pilot from former Saturday Night Live writer/humorist/novelist Simon Rich and Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video. The project, based on Rich’s book The Last Girlfriend On Earth, is described as a sweet, surreal, and bitingly funny look at the life and death stakes of dating in New York City. Jonathan Krisel (Portlandia, SNL) is set to direct the pilot from a script by Rich. The two are executive producing with Broadway Video for FX Prods. If Man Seeking Woman goes to series, it will make 28-year-old Rich one of the youngest series creators ever. He already is one of the youngest writers in the history of SNL, where he spent four seasons from 2007-2011 before segueing to a writing job at Pixar Studios. Rich, son of former New York columnist Frank Rich, was still an undergraduate at Harvard, where he edited The Harvard Lampoon, when he landed a two-book deal at Random House, His first book, Ant Farm: And Other Desperate Situations, was nominated for the Thurber Prize for American Humor. His first novel, Elliot Allagash, was optioned by Jason Reitman. The Last Girlfriend On Earth, Rich’s fifth book, was published in January. Man Seeking Woman joins two other comedy pilots at FX Networks, which is ramping up comedy development ahead of the fall launch of comedy-centric FXX: the Tracy Morgan-starrer Death Pact and the Andrew Gurland project.
Broadway Video has been very active in cable in the past year. This marks the company’s third cable comedy pilot, joining the Diallo Riddle & Bashir Salahuddin project and People In New Jersey at HBO. Like Rich, Riddle and Salahuddin too came out of one of Michaels’ late-night shows, Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. Rich is repped by CAA and the Levine Greenberg Literary Agency; Krisel is with CAA, Mosaic, and attorney Alex Kohner; Broadway Video is with CAA.