On the feature side, Halpern and Haskins wrote the script Book Smart, which has been optioned by AnnaPurna, as well as the Universal script Lunch Lady and New Line’s Work Wife. Halpern started in TV, writing for CBS’ The Unit. Haskins wrote and starred in Current TV’s SuperNews and Infomania. Both are repped by UTA, Mosaic and attorney Warren Dern. Rhimes is with ICM Partners, Beers with UTA.
Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers’ Shondaland has opened its 2015 development season with a comedy sale at ABC. Titled Splitsville, the project is being written by Trophy Wife creators Emily Halpern & Sarah Haskins.
In their new comedy, the Trophy Wife duo is continuing with the divorce theme. On Splitsville, in the wake of a wave of divorces, the single residents of a suburban cul-de-sac join forces to raise their kids and get through it together. Halpern and Haskins executive produce with Rhimes and Beers. ABC Studios, where Shondaland, as well as Halpern and Haskins, are under overall deals, is the studio.
Splitsville reunites Halpern with Shondaland. One of Halpern’s first writing jobs was on Rhimes’ Private Practice. ABC’s Splitsville comedy has no relation to the 2003 drama pilot of the same name, written by Abby Kohn and Mark Silverstein.
Getting a comedy series on the air has been a priority for Shondaland, which has four drama series on ABC this coming season, the TGIT lineup of Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How To Get Away With Murder and new series The Catch.
In addition to Splitsville, Shondaland also has a half-hour ABC comedy written by Scandal co-star Scott Foley and Greg Grunberg, Felicity alums and longtime friends. The single-camera project, about an engaged couple, has been rolled from last season.