Mike White’s ‘Mamma Dallas’ HBO Comedy Pilot Not Going Forward


HBO has opted not to go to series on Mamma Dallas, its comedy pilot by Enlightened creator Mike White, which followed a conservative Texan family who unwittingly hire a hard-living drag queen as their live-in nanny.

Image (1) mikewhite__130916204043.png for post 588385With its concept, the project was considered a big swing and, while it is not going forward, HBO remains committed to its creator, as reiterated by the network’s programming chief Michael Lombardo. “Mike White is one of the most talented filmmakers working today and we feel honored to have worked with him on Enlightened and the Mama Dallas pilot,” he said in a statement to Deadline. “The latter only reinforced our views of Mike’s prodigious talents. Unfortunately, after much discussion we have decided not to proceed to series on this work. We truly hope that we will find another opportunity to work together.”

Written, directed and executive produced by White, Mamma Dallas centered on Liberty (Augustus Prew) who appears to be an attractive woman with a flirty side — but she’s really a drag queen with an upbeat personality. On a path that leads to jail or prostitution or both, Liberty (also known as Albert) sees a future that will destroy his basically optimistic spirit and re-invents himself to get a job as a nanny to three children of a conservative Texan family. Paul Fitzgerald, Mary Catherine Garrison and Nico Tortorella co-starred. White executive produced the pilot with Dede Gardner.

HBO recently picked up two other comedy pilots to series, Divorce starring Sarah Jessica Parker, and Diallo Riddle and Bashir Salahuddin’s Brothers In Atlanta.


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  1. JulieKon May 1, 2015 10:19 am

    ugh, was hoping for a break from the oppressive Transparent.

  2. bounderon May 1, 2015 10:22 am

    That’s too bad. “Enlightened” might be one of the most underrated, underseen shows of the last ten years.

    • simonon May 1, 2015 10:44 am

      Probably why they decided to pass

    • on May 4, 2015 11:59 pm

      Enlightened was a beautiful, brilliant show.

  3. on May 1, 2015 11:37 am

    This sounds hilarious.

  4. anonon May 1, 2015 1:24 pm

    A huge, unforgivable mistake on the part of HBO. One of the funniest, and most unique comedy projects ever filmed for the network. They really have done Mike White wrong…

    • bsmogon May 1, 2015 1:59 pm

      Settle down Mike.

    • HHBOon May 1, 2015 4:37 pm

      Hi Mike!

    • MikeWhiteon May 2, 2015 6:21 am

      Wasn’t me. If I was gonna post on here, I’d be more subtle and sad, less angry.

  5. on May 2, 2015 10:33 am

    Mike White is a genius. The topic is timely. A show dedicated to humorous, yet sensitive approach to this misunderstood lifestyle with Mr White at the helm would have been brilliant. Hope another production company picks it up.

  6. Anonon May 2, 2015 4:56 pm

    I can’t believe HBO pull a plug to one of the funniest, humorous, and yet most promising comedy tv pilots of 2015-16. Mike White doesn’t deserve get rejected like that and I hope another networks pick this show up!!!!!

    • Annaon May 2, 2015 5:21 pm

      Oh come on, if it were any good, HBO would have done it…they are first in class. Not all pilots work, it happens. Everyone will be ok, I’m sure. HBO included.

  7. on May 3, 2015 12:21 pm

    It was an honor to work with Mike and the talented cast of this pilot. Grateful this pilot extended my SAG eligibiity.

  8. priscillamarodriguezon May 7, 2015 12:00 pm


  9. Anonon May 9, 2015 6:34 am

    It’s a shame I was looking forward for this show and hope any another networks like Showtime or Hulu pick it up!!!!

  10. ChrisKon May 11, 2015 8:33 am

    That’s a true shame. Sounded like it was going to be a funny show.