Thursday, May 11, 2006

NBC Officially Picks up "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" For the Fall, Created by Aaron Sorkin, Starring Bradley Whitford and Matthew Perry

From the St. Louis Post Dispatch:
"[D. L. Hughley is ] also in the cast of "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," a drama scheduled for NBC's fall lineup. The show, produced by "The West Wing" producers Aaron Sorkin and Thomas Schlamme, also stars Matthew Perry and Amanda Peet.

"I'm excited about it," Hughley said. "It's my first time doing a drama."

And the project certainly puts him in the company of quite a few heavy hitters.

"People throw around the word 'genius' a lot in our business, but I think those cats are some of the brightest people I've ever worked with," he said. "It's the first time I've ever been on a set and thought, 'Wow, I could get blown out if I don't work real hard.' It was a lot of fun, but it was a lot of hard work.""

The Syracuse Post Standard interviewed Aaron Sorkin:
"Q. Is there anything you can tell us about "Studio 60"? Is it fair to say it will have a lot of the writing style and pacing familiar to fans of "Sports Night" (Sorkin's former ABC series) and "West Wing"?

A. Yeah, I'm not going to be fooling anyone into thinking it was written by someone else."

From a TV Guide Blog:
" Matthew Perry — who, I must share, is terrific in TNT's The Ron Clark Story, premiering in August — says his other new project, NBC's just-booked-for-fall series Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, promises to be much more than a behind-the-scenes look at a Saturday Night Live-type series. "[Creator] Aaron Sorkin and [exec producer] Tommy Schlamme certainly know how to put on excellent, dramatic television," Perry tells "But the other thing I like about it, and what NBC likes about it, is it's kind of a show about how bad television has become. It even takes shots at NBC. It’s a rather significant show for them, and hopefully for everybody.""

Rick Kushman from the Sacramento Bee calles "Studio 60" "spectacular news for fans of TV with wit, heart and some rhythm: NBC announced last week that it's putting Aaron Sorkin's "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" on its fall lineup.

Sorkin, a multiple Emmy winner, is one of the best writers in Hollywood. His producing partner, Thomas Schlamme, also a multiple Emmy winner, is one of TV's best directors. They're the people who created "Sports Night" and "The West Wing," and their newest drama sounds like a combination of both.

Studio 60" will be the behind-the-scenes story of a fictional "Saturday Night Live," and reports from NBC and Warner Bros., the real studio producing the show, are that it has all the texture of a Schlamme-directed series and all the melody and wit of a Sorkin-written script.

The new show comes with a large and deep cast, including Matthew Perry, Bradley Whitford, Amanda Peet, Timothy Busfield, D.L. Hughley, Sarah Paulson, Steven Weber and Nathan Corddry. Perry and Whitford will play a writer-director team that will surely get compared with Sorkin and Schlamme.

Together, the real Sorkin and Schlamme have produced shows that are complex, engaging and lyrical, and Sorkin's scripts display a rare gift for the sound of the spoken word. When news got around that NBC had commissioned "Studio 60," it became the most-anticipated new show for this coming season."

A poster at the Aaron Sorkin Yahoo Group spoke to a friend who attended a pilot screening:
"Ok, yeah, I saw him on Saturday night- he said that, first of all, of all the pilots they have screened on the lot, it is by far the best.

He said it is classic Sorkin, the Tommy [Schlamme] has done an excellent job in directing it, and the casting is brilliant. My friend is not an Amanda Peet fan and had his doubts but said she is really great in this, very understated and classy and believable. He's now a fan. He said Matthew Perry is the best thing in the show and that Felicity Huffman was great in her very brief appearance.

That's all he managed to mention - he wasn't too forthcoming with details but I got that much out of him.

Any word on how Brad [Whitford] was?

Actually, I did ask since I am big Brad [Whitford] fan myself. he said Brad [Whitford] was typical Brad. I guess that's good enough for me."

From the Hollywood Reporter:
"As the broadcast networks prepare their fall schedules, NBC could look to bolster its fortunes on Tuesday or Wednesday by shifting "ER" to a 9 p.m. or 10 p.m. slot and pair it with "Law & Order" or "Law & Order: SVU," according to the rumors. NBC's new drama "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," which earned its formal greenlight last week, was said to be the contender for the Thursday 10 p.m. berth if "ER" moves."

From NBC:
" New Backstage Television Drama from Emmy Winners Aaron Sorkin and Thomas Schlamme Earns Slot for Next Fall

BURBANK, Calif. - May 4, 2006 - NBC has added "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" - the new backstage television drama series from Emmy Award-winning executive producers Aaron Sorkin and Thomas Schlamme (both for NBC's "The West Wing")-- to its Fall 2006-07 primetime schedule, it was announced today by Kevin Reilly, President, NBC Entertainment.

"Aaron Sorkin and Thomas Schlamme's work is TV at its best and 'Studio 60' lives up to that standard," said Reilly. "I'm thrilled they are back on NBC for the Fall."

Among the stars of the ensemble cast are Matthew Perry ("Friends"), Amanda Peet ("Syriana"), Bradley Whitford ("The West Wing"), Sarah Paulson ("Down with Love"), D.L. Hughley ("The Hughleys"), Nathan Corddry ("The Daily Show with Jon Stewart"), Timothy Busfield ("thirtysomething"), Steven Weber ("Wings"), Evan Handler ("The West Wing") and Carlos Jacott ("Being John Malkovich").

Sorkin returns to television with this crackling take on the drama behind the humor of producing a popular, late-night comedy sketch show, "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip." He lays bare the backstage politics, romances and delicate balance between creative talent, on-air personalities and network executives in an instant text-messaging world.

Prominent are Jordan McDeere (Peet), a savvy new network entertainment chief who inherits a massive public relations disaster on the series -- even before she starts her first day - and Matt Albie (Perry) and Danny Tripp (Whitford), a brilliant creative team that she wants to resurrect the program. Also playing crucial roles are the sketch comedy series stars Harriet Hayes (Paulson), Simon Stiles (Hughley) and Tom Jeter (Corddry), their normally cool-headed director, Cal Shanley (Busfield) as well as supreme network honcho Jack Rudolph (Weber).

The series is a production of Warner Bros Television.

NBC will announce its complete Fall 2006-07 primetime schedule at its annual Upfront presentation on May 15 at Radio City Music Hall. "

See First Photo From the Show and Most Recent News on the Cast & Production Team
Various Updates on the show, on the shooting, on the cast
Bradley Whitford Casting Announcement
"Studio 60" Casting Rumors
Amanda Peet Interview and Full "Studio 60" Script
First Casting Announcements
Previous Casting Updates
Various "Studio 7" Updates
Matthew Perry Rumor
Round-Up of Info
Casting Info
Info on accessing the audition script.
Praise for the show

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