It’s official: TV writers are stars, and can even be superstars if they treat the media right. Damn, why can’t I get a gig?
HBO Orders Comedy Pilot From Stephen Merchant And ‘Bad Teacher’ Writers – by Nellie Andreeva
HBO has picked up to pilot Hello Ladies, a comedy co-written, directed by and starring Stephen Merchant. The project, which The Office co-creator co-wrote with former Office writer-producers Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, stars the 6ft 7in Merchant as a gawky Englishman searching for the woman of his dreams in Los Angeles. Half as charming as he thinks he is — and twice as desperate — he’s obsessed with infiltrating the glamorous world of beautiful people. Unfortunately the beautiful people won’t let him in.
Merchant, who also explored the theme in his Hello Ladies standup show last year, Eisenberg and Stupnitsky are executive producing the pilot, which is slated to shoot before the end of the year. On the feature side, Eisenberg and Stupnitsky, repped by WME and Mosaic, co-wrote box-office hit Bad Teacher. Writer/actor/standup comedian Merchant is best known for his collaborations with Ricky Gervais. The duo co-created The Office, Extras and Life’s Too Short. Additionally, WME-repped Merchant co-starred opposite Gervais on Extras.