EXCLUSIVE: CBS has passed on another high-profile project targeted for next season, comedy Fun, starring Ugly Betty standouts Becki Newton and Michael Urie. It had a pilot production commitment. The multi-camera funeral home comedy hailed from 2 Broke Girls co-creator/executive producer Michael Patrick King, former Ugly Betty executive producers Tracy Poust & Jon Kinnally and Warner Bros. TV.
The pass, which I hear involved the use of a force majeure contract provision allowing the network not to pay penalties, follows CBS’ decision not to proceed with The Lincoln Lawyer, its high-profile legal drama from The Practice creator David E. Kelley, based on Michael Connelly’s novels, which had a massive series production commitment.
As Deadline reported, CBS was expected to make more decisions on pilots that have not been shot because all production was shut down by the coronavirus pandemic, wreaking havoc in the broadcast pilot season. The network, which also is evaluating its existing series, with renewal/cancellation decisions pending, is preparing for its May 13 video Upfront special that will replace its upfront presentation this year and is expected to include some information about CBS’ 2020-21 lineup.
Written by King, Poust and Kinnally, Fun is described as a life-long love story between a brother and a sister, played by Urie and Newton, who always encourage each other to have fun – no matter what hardship life is currently serving up. FUN celebrates life – in spite of the fact that the family business is a funeral home. As they say in their family: “You can’t spell funeral without f-u-n.” The brother returns to his Pennsylvania hometown to help his sister run the struggling business after his emotional and devastating break-up with… show business.
King executive produces via his MPK Productions, along with Poust and Kinnally. Urie and Newton were producers. Warner Bros. TV was the studio.