EXCLUSIVE: A quarter century after Doogie Howser, another teen prodigy is looking to headline a comedy series. Enlightened creator/exec producer Mike White has teamed with Joe Port and Joe Wiseman for an untitled single-camera comedy, which has gone to NBC with a put pilot commitment. Written by Port and Wiseman, the ensemble workplace comedy centers on a driven but naive 16-year-old prodigy chef who gets a job working in the kitchen for his idol, a temperamental and unpredictable celebrity chef. It was inspired by Flynn McGarry, a 14-year-old Los Angeles chef who has been making national headlines. McGarry will serve as a producer on the series, from White’s RipCord Prods and 20th Century Fox TV where Port and Wiseman are under an overall deal. White, Port and Wiseman executive produce with RipCord’s David Bernad (Enlightened). Enlightened, which ended its two-season run on HBO, was nominated for two Emmys this year, including for lead Laura Dern. This marks Port and Wiseman’s return to NBC where they wrote and exec produced another comedy through 20th TV last year, Joe Joe And Jane, which went to pilot.
By age 13, Flynn, who got into cooking when he was 10, had a monthly supper club Eureka operating out of his home with a small staff that served up to 20 guests an 8- to 14-course tasting menu of progressive American cuisine. Eureka has since moved to BierBeisl in Beverly Hills, where it is held monthly. McGarry has apprenticed and staged at Ray’s and Stark Bar at LACMA, Alinea in Chicago and Eleven Madison Park in New York and has appeared on Today and been featured in The New Yorker. White and Bernad are with UTA and attorney Robert Offer; Wiseman and Port are with UTA and attorney Bob Myman; McGarry is with UTA, Authentic and Eric Greenspan.