In pilot news, we have a couple of unsurprising castings in a couple of new productions this year. Every year you can expect to see actors and actresses fleeing their failing shows and trying out pilots that will hopefully work better and for a longer period of time. This year is no different, though we are seeing a case of someone taking on a pilot who, for all intents and purposes, probably doesn’t need the work. In this case, I’m referring to Seth Green, who has joined Seth MacFarlane’s first live-action sitcom for Fox. And more predictably, Debra Messing is jumping the sinking ship that is NBC’s Smash.
Let’s start with Green, as his is the more interesting of stories. Deadline reported him to be joining co-star Tommy Dewey for MacFarlane’s multi-camera sitcom, Dads. In it, he will play Eli, who, along with roommate Warner (Dewey), are successful men in their 30s whose lives are turn upside down when their nightmare fathers unexpectedly move in with them. Eli is a man who hasn’t grown up and runs a successful video game business with Warner.
Considering Green’s voice-work on Family Guy and his own Adult Swim series Robot Chicken – not to mention his upcoming animated Star Wars universe-set comedy – why did Green need to take this job? Maybe it’s because it’s only six episodes and he was doing it as a favor to MacFarlane? I haven’t a clue. But I am curious, though doubtful I’ll ever get an answer.
As for Messing, Deadline reported she is leaving Smash, which will most assuredly be canceled after the low ratings its second season as achieved, to play 40-year-old Ella in an untitled CBS comedy pilot from Julie Rottenberg and Elisa Zuritsky. Messing will also co-executive produce the pilot based on Israeli format, making this one of the biggest talent deals this pilot season. Ella is a mother of three, a lover, a friend and a career woman. Her life is very demanding, so she lies – all kinds, big or small – to weave herself in and out of situations. I don’t know if this sounds very appealing, but anything is better than what Smash has become.
The Israeli series was created by Daniela London-Dekel and Dana Eden and written by London-Dekel and produced by Eden’s Eden Prods. Both will executive produce the CBS TV Studios production, along with Ran Telem.