EXCLUSIVE: NBC’s comedy pilot Sunnyside (formerly Untitled Kal Penn/Matt Murray) has cast the seven co-leads opposite Kal Penn. Kiran Deol, Moses Storm, Diana Maria Riva, Samba Schutte, Poppy Liu, Joel Kim Booster and Tudor Petrut will co-star in the single-camera comedy executive produced by Penn, writer-producer Matt Murray, The Good Place creator/executive producer Michael Schur and Universal TV.
Co-written by Penn and Murray, Sunnyside is named after the neighborhood in the historically diverse Queens borough of New York where the show is set. (The photo above shows Penn spending time in Sunnyside last weekend.) It centers on former New York City Councilman Garrett Shah (Penn), who finds his calling when faced with seven recent immigrants — five of them played by immigrant actors — in need of his help and in search of the American Dream.
The seven recent immigrants are Jin Hao, played by South Korea-born Booster; Mallory, played by UK-born Deol; Mei Lin, played by China-born Liu; Drzen, played by Romania-born Petrut; Hakim, played by Africa-born Schutte; Griselda, played by Riva, a first generation Dominican; and Brady, played by Storm.
Directing the pilot is another immigrant, Oz Rodriguez. The ensemble was put together by casting director Allison Jones who also has worked with Schur on his other shows, Parks and Recreation, Brooklyn Nine-Nine The Good Place.
Penn and Murray executive produce alongside Schur — who is supervising via his Fremulon — Dan Spilo of Industry Entertainment and David Miner of 3 Arts Entertainment. Universal TV is the studio.
Deol and Storm also were cast together last year in the Pop TV pilot Arranged. Deol directed the documentary Woman Rebel, which was nominated for an Emmy, shortlisted for an Oscar and distributed by HBO. She also directed American Haze, a documentary about her own family’s immigration story for Sundance Now. Deol is repped by Haven Entertainment, WME, and Cohen Gardner.
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Storm is a comedian who recently toured with Conan O’Brien. He is repped by Haven Entertainment, WME and Hansen Jacobson.
Fellow comedian Booster, currently a consulting producer on Netflix’s Big Mouth, is repped by WME; Omnipop and Ginsburg Daniels.
Riva was last seen in the CBS sitcom Man with a Plan and will next appear in the Netflix series Dead to Me and the Apple drama series Morning Show. She’s repped by Kohner Agency, Gateway Management and attorney Robert Myman.
Schutte played a supporting role in the critically acclaimed Netflix film The Tiger Hunter and was a series regular on the Dutch version of The Daily Show called De Nieuwste Show. He’s repped by The Green Room Management, Daniel Hoff Agency, Alvarado Rey and DPN Agency.
Petrut is repped by Amber Management.