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IFC unveils a development slate of 11 scripted comedies

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Exciting news over here at IFC HQ. We have just announced a development slate of 11 scripted comedies from some of the greatest comedic minds around, including Megan Mullaly (“Will & Grace” “Party Down” “Children’s Hospital”), Kate Micucci, and folks behind “Reno 911!” “The Sarah Silverman Program” and The Upright Citizens Brigade. Plus our own adopted comic Chris Gethard who has teamed up with writer and director Tom Scharpling of WFMU’s The Best Show/”Monk” to craft a new comedy just for us. Among the 11 scripted comedies in the mix, we’ve ordered three pilots and eight scripts, which are all in line with our network’s “slightly off” sensibility. Needless to say, we’re really excited.

Here’s what we’re working on:

IFC has ordered the following Pilots:

TIMMS INDUSTRIAL PIPING (Pilot; working title)

A scripted comedy set in the fictional town of Timms Valley, Wisconsin, where the lives and livelihoods of its citizens are intertwined with the fate of the town’s biggest employer, Timms Industrial Piping. When the company’s founder and CEO goes missing in a plane crash, the lives of the characters are turned upside down. Shot in stop-motion animation with baby dolls repurposed as an array of adult characters, and modeled on 1980s primetime soaps like Dynasty, the show is written by Steven Conrad (The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Pursuit of Happyness), and created by Conrad, Jeff Dieter and Tom Glynn. The show is produced by Conrad’s Chicago-based company, Elephant Pictures. Currently in production, the pilot features the voice talents of: Maria Bamford, Elizabeth Banks, Lance Barber, Giancarlo Esposito, Ed Flynn, Kathryn Hahn, Nick Kroll, Matt Levin, John Lithgow, Kumail Nanjiani, Mike O’Connell, and Seann William Scott.

GARFUNKEL & OATES (Pilot)

The pilot is a scripted comedy about the female comedy-folk duo Riki Lindhome (Garfunkel) and Kate Micucci (Oates). The pilot centers on the aspirations and misadventures of this odd couple, and will spotlight the personal and professional lives of the duo whose career choices – singing satirical and sometimes dirty songs – leaves them with little in common with their peers, and no one but each other to turn to for support and understanding. The pilot, produced by Abominable Pictures’ Jonathan Stern (Children’s Hospital, NTSF:SD:SUV::) will begin production in May in Los Angeles.

INTERNATIONAL PLAN (Pilot)

A scripted comedy about two newly single guys who travel around the world looking for love, and in the process form an invaluable friendship. The project is based on the writers’ true story: Michael Blieden (Up All Night, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon) and Eric Ledgin (Late Night with Jimmy Fallon). The pilot, produced by @radical.media begins production in mid-April in Stockholm.

IFC has ordered the following scripts:

AMERICAN STORAGE

What happens when an employee at a storage facility befriends a guy he finds living in one of the units? The project is based on the short film of the same name co-written by Andrew Jay Cohen (Townies) and Brendan O’Brien (Townies).

CULT FOLLOWING

Cult Following follows two friends who jointly run a health food restaurant and inadvertently become cult leaders. The pilot script is co-written by and co-stars Matt Besser (co-founder of the Upright Citizens Brigade, Freak Dance) and Rich Fulcher (The Mighty Boosh, Snuff Box).

GOD’S WORK

Actor/comedian Kyle Dunnigan (Reno 911!, Comedy Central Presents, co-host Professor Blastoff podcast) plays multiple characters living in a community that surrounds a Connecticut church. The pilot script is co-written by Kyle Dunnigan and Tim Long (The Simpsons).

JETPACKULA

Part Terminator, part X-Files, part Mork and Mindy, the supernatural buddy comedy Jetpackula is written and created by Rob Schrab (The Sarah Silverman Program) and follows a washed up comic book illustrator as he befriends a vampire from the future.

STUPID LIFE

Previously announced as A Bad Idea I’m About to Do, this show’s script is based on comedian Chris Gethard’s (The Chris Gethard Show, The Other Guys, This American Life) recent autobiographical book of the same name. Tom Scharpling (The Best Show on WFMU, Monk) is series executive producer and co-creator. Gethard and Scharpling are co-writing the pilot script.

TRIGGER MEN

Michael Davis (Shoot ‘Em Up) is writing a script for the action/buddy comedy Trigger Men. Based on a graphic novel, the story follows two friends and former hit men as one tries to clean up his act and the other pulls him deeper into trouble.

TWO IDIOTS

Created and written by Megan Mullally (Will & Grace, Party Down, Children’s Hospital) and newcomer Tina Kapousis, Two Idiots follows a pair of odd women raised in an old world Beverly Hills hotel whose simplest everyday undertakings fly absurdly off the rails, with their beleaguered butler and a remedial shared boyfriend in tow.

WASPS

IFC, in partnership with the New York Television Festival, awarded a script deal and the 2012 “Out of the Box” prize to Damian Lanigan of Brooklyn, NY. The project centers on a dysfunctional Main Line Philadelphia family who find that they have squandered away their money and are left with nothing but the shared ownership of an enormous family mansion.

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

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Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…

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IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. 

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number! 

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time. 

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by. 

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IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo. 

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim. 

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t? 

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?” 

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud. 

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

The-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

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Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”

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Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).

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Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.

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And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.

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Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

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In this crazy digital age, sometimes all we really want is to reach out and touch something. Maybe that’s why so many of us are still gung-ho about owning stuff on DVD. It’s tangible. It’s real. It’s tech from a bygone era that still feels relevant, yet also kitschy and retro. It’s basically vinyl for people born after 1990.

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Inevitably we all have that friend whose love of the disc is so absolutely repellent that he makes the technology less appealing. “The resolution, man. The colors. You can’t get latitude like that on a download.” Go to hell, Tim.

Yes, Tim sucks, and you don’t want to be like Tim, but maybe he’s onto something and DVD is still the future. Here are some benefits that go beyond touch.

It’s Decor and Decorum

With DVDs and a handsome bookshelf you can show off your great taste in film and television without showing off your search history. Good for first dates, dinner parties, family reunions, etc.

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Forget Public Wifi

Warm up that optical drive. No more awkwardly streaming episodes on shady free wifi!

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Inter-not

Internet service goes down. It happens all the time. It could happen right now. Then what? Without a DVD on hand you’ll be forced to make eye contact with your friends and family. Or worse – conversation.

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Self Defense

You can’t throw a download like a ninja star. Think about it.

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If you’d like to experience the benefits DVD ownership yourself, Portlandia Season 7 is now available on DVD and Blue-Ray.