December 18, 2013 4:45pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Marcia Cross to Star in Fox's 'Fatrick' Comedy
A year and a half after saying farewell to Wisteria Lane, Desperate Housewives alum Marcia Cross is returning to television.
The actress, who played Bree for eight seasons on the ABC primetime soap, has boarded Fox's Nahnatchka Khan comedy pilot Fatrick, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Fatrick centers on Patrick, a 30-something man who realizes that his life isn't quite where it should be. The former fat kid is forced to face the damage caused by years of being "Fatrick," a chubby little kid just trying to survive. The comedy will take place in the past -- showing "Fatrick" at school and at home -- as well as in the present.
Cross will play Arlene, Patrick's mother, and will appear in both the present day and flashback parts of the comedy. A nutritionist and a fit, energetic woman, Arlene is rigid and intense when it comes to her family's eating habits. Proud of her skinny daughter, she's not as keen on her plumper offspring, whom she used to bury in the sand so they could get some exercise digging themselves out before the tide rolled in. Arlene means well, but she has a little filter problem.
Khan and Apartment 23 co-executive producer Corey Nickerson penned the pilot, which will be directed by Oscar winners Nat Faxon and Jim Rash (The Descendants, The Way Way Back). Fatrick hails from 20th Century Fox Television, where Khan is under an overall deal. Kevin Walsh (The Way Way Back) and Jeff Morton will also exec produce alongside Khan, Nickerson, Faxon and Rash.
The role marks Cross' first role since the conclusion of Marc Cherry's iconic Housewives. The actress' twins were born in the middle of the show's eight-season run, and she took time off to spend with her family following the conclusion of the series. She is repped by Gersh and Gartner/Green Entertainment.
Cross, who earned an Emmy and three Golden Globe nominations for Housewives, joins a cast that also includes Apartment 23 alum Ray Ford, who plays Patrick's best friend, and youngsters Dante Hoagland and Lucy Rust.