You’re not supposed to bite the hand that feeds, but you can definitely poke some fun at it once you’re outside of its grip. Former Today Show host Katie Couric will be shining a comedic spotlight on the morning TV news show world as an executive producer on a high-profile comedy project that has Michelle Pfeiffer tapped to star. Everything about this sounds interesting to me.
For what would be her first major TV role, Pfeiffer is set to play an anchor on a morning news show, according to Variety, and the series would view the behind-the-scenes process through a comedic prism. (Could this be a less surreal version of 30 Rock?) Couric will presumably lend some of her stories and experiences to the project, although the series would likely just use those as inspirations rather than directly adapting them. She spent 15 years on Today, and after a 5-year stint with CBS, hosted the ABC morning show Katie and then jumped ship to Yahoo News. So it’s safe to say she’s probably got thousands of anecdotes that can inform the series’ storylines.
The untitled project is the creation of Diane English, who is best known for having created the excellent sitcom Murphy Brown, in which Candace Bergen starred as an anchor and journalist for a newsmagazine series. Also having created the Ted Danson-starring Ink and the Jay Thomas-starring Love & War, English was one of the queens of 1990s sitcoms, but hasn’t been heard from much since, having followed Murphy Brown up with a lone screenplay for 2012’s The Women, which she also directed.
English is joining Couric and Pfeiffer in shopping the project around to some lofty destinations. It’s reportedly being brought to HBO, Showtime, AMC, Netflix and Amazon, so it seems like they’re aiming for something a bit more complex than lower-denominator network fluff. Also a part of the executive production team are Two and a Half Men’s Eric and Kim Tannenbaum, who are being allowed to step out of their overall deal at CBS to work on this project. Notice CBS wasn’t on that list above.
Couric is in a particularly comedic mood these days, it seems, as she pranked the ever-living shit out of James Corden earlier today for a taping of The Late Late Show with James Corden. Check it out in the clip below, which gets a little too real for a few seconds.
Here’s hoping one of the networks or streaming sites picks this project up, as the world needs more Michelle Pfeiffer in it.