In a conversation with reporters following today’s TCA panel on NBC’s new comedy Indebted, series star Fran Drescher did not specifically confirm or deny that she is at work on a TV revival of The Nanny but said she “contractually” cannot proceed on any plan to revive her 1990s sitcom until after the character goes to Broadway.
“[The Broadway musical] is the next big Nanny thing, so I have to honor that commitment,” Drescher said. She added that she wants to write another book after the Broadway chapter is over.
As previously announced, the 1990s sitcom is being developed into a Broadway musical, with series creators Drescher and her ex-husband Peter Marc Jacobson set to write the show’s book, with Crazy Ex-Girlfriend‘s Rachel Bloom and Adam Schlesinger writing the music.
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For now, Drescher fans will have to be content with seeing her in Indebted, from writer Dan Levy, Sony TV and Doug Robinson Productions.
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In the series, young parents portrayed by Abby Elliott and Adam Pally, end up having to take care of Adam’s character’s freewheeling boomer parents portrayed by Drescher and Steven Weber [pictured above], who have mishandled their finances and wound up with crippling debt.
Drescher appeared on the panel with Pally, Elliott, Weber, fellow cast member Jessy Hodges and Executive Producers Dan Levy and Doug Robinson.
Drescher readily acknowledged that her fans will see a similar style of comedy as they did during her years as the Nanny. She said jumping back onto a sitcom 26 years after the launch of The Nanny “is more demanding for sure,” joking that a Nanny revival would have to be called “The Granny.”
However, don’t expect radical changes in Drescher’s trademark self-deprecating humor.
“I have made peace with the fact that I am never going to be Meryl Streep in my career,” she said. “[I] play characters that are not mean-spirited…I started my career as a hooker with a heart of gold…That’s my brand of comedy.”
In keeping with her amiable personae, Drescher did not criticize the show’s premiere episode but hinted that viewers will see Indebted find its legs in subsequent episodes as the humor becomes less broad.
“[As we] shot a 13-episode arc, it got a little more grounded, we dealt with some more real issues that families under these circumstances do have to deal with,” she said.
“New sitcoms have to find their voice,” Drescher added. “This is probably a better pilot than a lot of pilots, [but] in fairness to the series, over the course of the 13 episodes, it lands.”
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