Showtime is developing King Liz, a half-hour dramedy based on the play of the same name by Latina playwright Fernanda Coppel, who will write the adaptation. King Liz is about an aggressive female sports agent and the contentious relationship with her ambitious assistant. In the play, Liz has worked for more than two decades at an agency run by an older Mr. Candy, who has been a generous mentor but can also casually reveal his condescension to the woman whose career he shaped. Now retiring, he puts pressure on Liz to sign a high school basketball phenomenon from the hard streets of Red Hook, Brooklyn if she wants to succeed him at the company helm. King Liz premiered at Second Stage Uptown this summer and played an extended run, closing last month.
Coppel, who has stated publicly that her goal is to write more roles for Latina women, is the latest new female voice Showtime is bringing to the network, joining The Affair co-creator Sarah Treem and Lena Waithe, creator of a Chicago-set pilot, now in production.
Coppel, who grew up in San Diego and started working at age 16 to support herself, enrolled at UC Santa Cruz with the plan to become a lawyer but instead got into playwriting. Her professional New York debut Chimichangas And Zoloft premiered at the Atlantic Theater Company in 2012 and is published by Samuel French. Her work has won the Asuncion Queer Latino Festival at Pregones Theater, the 2012 HOLA Award for Outstanding Achievement in Playwriting, and the 2012 Helen Merrill Award.
In TV, Coppel has written episodes of FX’s The Bridge and DirecTV’s Kingdom. She is repped by WME and Writ Large.