10:16am PT by Lesley Goldberg
Craig Ferguson to Host Historical Talk Show on History
Craig Ferguson is returning to the small screen.
The former host of CBS' The Late Late Show has been tapped to host a celebrity-driven historical show on History, the cable network announced Thursday.
Join or Die With Craig Ferguson, which has been picked up for 16 half-hour episodes, features Ferguson debating provocative and timely topics with a panel of guests including celebrities, history experts as well as the American public via social media. Topics will include a range of offerings including the biggest presidential campaign flop, greatest founding father and key inventions. The series will feature lively debates and, naturally, feature digital pieces.
The news follows reports that Ferguson was primed to host a new syndicated talk show for Tribune-owned stations that was eyed for the 7:30 p.m. slot, which did not move forward. Ferguson, in the time since he signed off Late Late Show, has kept busy hosting syndicated game show Celebrity Name Game (which was renewed for a second season in January). He most recently was attached to return to acting in ABC comedy pilot The King of 7B, which was passed over in May.
The History show hails from Lionsgate TV, where the comedian and host is under an overall deal to develop both scripted and unscripted fare for the studio. Join or Die is produced by Comedy Dynamics and Green Mountain West, in association with Lionsgate. Ferguson, Phil Cottone, Brian Volk-Weiss and Jim Biederman exec produce. Tim Healy and Matt Ginsburg oversee for History.
The news comes as historical-themed unscripted fare has been emerging as a hot genre following Comedy Central's success with Derek Waters' Drunk History in which celebrities re-enact historical events as told by a drunken guest moderator.
A premiere date — and time slot — for the series has not yet been determined.