Smash star Debra Messing is returning to half-hour comedy with a starring role in CBS‘ untitled Julie Rottenberg/Elisa Zuritsky pilot (formerly Mother’s Day). In addition to playing the lead, Will & Grace alumna Messing will serve as a co-executive producer on the project, based on an Israeli format, in one of the richest talent deals this pilot season. The untitled comedy centers on 40-year-old Ella (Messing) who, in order to successfully navigate through the demanding life of being a mother of three, a lover, a friend and a career woman, constantly lies her way out of and into situations — little lies, big lies, white and at times not-so-white lies. The project reunites Emmy winner Messing with Rottenberg and Zuritsky who served as co-executive producers on Smash. Messing’s casting is formally in second position to the NBC Broadway drama, which is not expected to return after a very low rated Season 2. The original Israeli series was created by Daniela London-Dekel and Dana Eden, written by London-Dekel and produced by Eden’s Eden Prods. Rottenberg and Zuritsky executive produce the CBS version, from CBS TV Studios, with London-Dekel, Eden and Keshet’s Avi Nir and Ran Telem. Messing is with Gersh, 3 Arts and Rick Genow.