Season 3 of the police procedural sendup Angie Tribeca premieres Monday on TBS. It’s evocative of Airplane! and The Naked Gun films, but despite the absurdity of plot lines that include ferrets and ventriloquists, an authentic spoof requires deadpan acting, EP and writer Ira Ungerleider said at Deadline’s Contenders Emmys event Sunday.
“Their assignment on the show is you’re on a procedural,” he said. “I’m the disciplinarian that won’t let anyone smile, wink or give a face like, ‘Oh that was crazy.’ They are cops and that’s it, and everything has to be taken seriously.” Most serious of all is Rashida Jones, who stars as a detective in the LAPD’s Really Heinous Crimes Unit. “It’s like her acting could come out of The Wire and yet there’s all this crazy nonsense going on. She’s just so good at it. … Airplane! was the inspiration for everything.”
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Co-starring Hayes MacArthur, Andrée Vermeulen, Jere Burns and Deon Cole, Angie Tribeca was created by Steve and Nancy Carell. Guest stars have included James Franco, Jon Hamm, Rhys Darby and Heather Graham, while Season 3 promises appearances from Natalie Portman, Jack McBrayer, Rob Riggle, Ed Helms and Chris Pine – who will pull off a genius take on Anthony Hopkins’ Hannibal Lecter.
As for his dream guest star, Ungerleider is well pleased with his lot. “We had Natalie Portman on the show, who was my dream guest,” he told moderator Dominic Patten of Deadline. “Christian Bale would be pretty cool, Ryan Gosling would be cool, Beyonce would be cool. I mean, she was in Goldmember, wasn’t she?”
Created by Sarah-Violet Bliss, Charles Rogers and their former NYU film professor Michael Showalter (Wet Hot American Summer), TBS’ comedy Search Party follows Dory Sief (Alia Shawkat), a disgruntled New York millennial searching for purpose in her life. When she hears about the disappearance of her college friend Chantal, Dory obsesses over solving the mystery. Also starring John Reynolds, John Early and Meredith Hagner, the series was renewed for a second season in December.
“We wanted to do a TV show,” creator and EP Sarah-Violet Bliss said. “We thought about making it like a murder mystery, and the way we wanted to do it was make it independently and then shop it out to networks. … When we showed it to TBS, they really loved it and have supported us throughout in such an awesome way.”
“We knew the basic feeling we wanted the season to end with,” co-creator and EP Charles Rogers added, “but basically it means everything to Dory to find out what happened to Chantal, and we wanted there to be a twist at the end of the journey that felt meaningful and existential and said something about who Dory was as a person. If you haven’t seen it, that happens.”
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