NBC has given pilot orders to three single-camera comedies from big-name auspices that all had big commitments with major penalties attached.
The untitled Charlie Grandy & Mindy Kaling project, which had a put pilot commitment, comes from The Mindy Project creator, executive producer and star Kaling and the series’ executive producer Charlie Grandy, with Kaling also featured in a recurring role. The Sackett Sisters, which also had a put pilot commitment, is from the 30 Rock trio of creator/executive producer Fey, executive producer Robert Carlock and former writer Luke Del Tredici. Space travel comedy Spaced Out, which had a pilot production commitment, hails from the Undateable duo of creator/executive producer Adam Sztykiel and executive producer Bill Lawrence. Spaced Out is produced by Warner Bros. TV, the Grandy/Kaling project and The Sackett Sisters are from Universal TV.
Written by Sztykiel, Spaced Out, from WBTV and Loawrence’s studio-based Doozer, is a workplace comedy that centers on a working class genius and his struggles to fit in with an established team all made more difficult when their job is building a rocket to Mars. Sztykiel executive produces with Doozer’s Lawrence and Jeff Ingold.
This is the third consecutive collaboration between Sztykiel, Doozer/WBTV and NBC, following the multi-camera comedy series Undateable, which ran for three seasons, the last of which aired live, and a multi-cam pilot starring stand-up comedian Vladimir Caamaño last year.
Written by Kaling and Grandy, the untitled Grandy/Kaling comedy centers on Vince, a charismatic gym owner with no ambition who lives with his younger brother Michael, a gorgeous idiot. Their simple life of women and working out is put on hold when the teenage son of Vince is dropped off on their doorstep by Priya (Kaling as a recurring guest star), one of his old high school flings.
Uni TV is producing the comedy with Kaling’s Kaling International banner and 3 Arts Entertainment. Kaling and Grandy executive produce alongside 3 Arts’ Howard Klein.
This marks the second pilot for Kaling following The Mindy Project, which originated at NBC before migrating to Fox and ultimately to Hulu.
Grandy, who worked with Kaling on The Office, is on a streak. This is his third consecutive comedy scripts going to pilot, the multi-camera 48 Hours ’til Monday at Fox during the 2014-15 cycle and the single-camera Dumb Prince at NBC last season.
Penned by Brooklyn Nine-Nine executive producer Del Tredici, The Sackett Sisters is about two estranged sisters who perform a Sully Sullenberger-esque act of public heroism, then are forced to navigate their new found notoriety together.
Del Tredici, Fey and Carlock executive produce with 3 Arts’ David Miner (30 Rock, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt). The project hails from Universal TV, where Fey, Carlock and Del Tredici all have overall deals; Fey’s Little Stranger; and 3 Arts.
This is Fey and Carlock’s fifth comedy project with 30 Rock alums to go to pilot, following Cabot College at Fox and Family Fortune at ABC with Matt Hubbard, The Kicker at CBS with Jack Burditt, and Great News at NBC with Tracey Wigfield. Great News went to to series, set to debut this midseason.
Today’s pickups bring the number of NBC comedy pilots this year to 6.