Fox has set Cheers alum Rob Long to write and the Gail Berman-run SideCar Content Accelerator to produce The Texanist, a multi-camera comedy inspired by David Courtney’s Texas Monthly column. The project had been on fast-track off-cycle development since the broadcast network in January acquired the IP and launched a search for a writer to adapt it.
Penned by Long, The Texanist tells the story of Dave, host of a popular Austin-area radio show that dispenses advice to Texas natives and newcomers alike on what, exactly, is the true Texas way. But the “Texas way” is changing — in good ways and not-so-good ways — and it’s Dave’s job, with the help of his wife and family and co-workers, to figure out which changes to embrace and which to reject.
Long executive produces with Berman via SideCar; as well as Courtney; Megan Creydt, Texas Monthly executive editor, new story platforms; and Texas Monthly president Scott Brown. The project is a co-production of SideCar and Fox Entertainment.
“I’m a longtime reader of Texas Monthly and a huge fan of David Courtney’s sly and generous column,” said Long. “The Texanist is about facing a changing world and trying to hold fast to the important things while letting the other stuff move with the times. And knowing which is which. Or trying to.”
Texas Monthly has been published out of Austin, TX for more than 40 years.
“Since 2007, Texas Monthly writer David Courtney has offered our readers sage advice in the voice of semi-fictional character The Texanist, a trusted arbiter of all things Texan who habitually refers to himself in the third person,” said Creydt, praising Long for his “nuanced understanding of The Texanist‘s humor and what makes this column so special.”
Over the years, the column has tackled such questions as ‘Is it all right to tuck my jeans into my boots? Can a really hot pepper give me a chemical burn? Are we able to bury Granddad in the old family cemetery if we don’t own it anymore?’
Long began his career writing and producing NBC’s long-running series, Cheers, on which he served as co-executive producer in its final season. More recently he was the executive producer and showrunner of Kevin Can Wait, starring Kevin James, which aired for two seasons on CBS, and before that, created and executive produced Sullivan & Son, which aired for three seasons on TBS. Long’s most recent book, Bigly: Donald Trump in Verse, was published in October 2017 by Regnery. His weekly radio commentary, “Martini Shot,” is broadcast on the Los Angeles public radio station KCRW, and distributed nationally.
Long is repped by Brillstein Entertainment Partners and attorney Hillary Bibicoff. Texas Monthly is repped by CAA.