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Matthew Perry develops single-camera project

To play the lead in comedy he'll co-write, exec produce

Matthew Perry is returning to broadcast television with a single-camera comedy that has been snapped up by ABC.

The "Friends" alum is set to star in, co-write and executive produce the untitled project produced by Sony Pictures TV.

Perry, who turned 40 in August, conceived the comedy, in which he will play a self-involved manager of a second-rate sports arena who begins to re-evaluate his life on his 40th birthday.

After meeting with a number of writers, Perry teamed with Sony-based Alex Barnow and Mark Firek, who will pen the script with him and exec produce.

Thomas Schlamme, who worked with Perry on "Friends," "The West Wing" and "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," is on board to direct and exec produce.

The project also is exec produced by Sony TV-based Jamie Tarses, the former broadcast exec credited with the development of "Friends" who was the inspiration for Amanda Peet's character on "Studio 60" and served as a consultant on that show.

Perry is the third "Friends" alum making a return to series TV with a single-camera comedy vehicle. Courteney Cox toplines ABC's "Cougar Town," and Matt LeBlanc recently signed on to star in the Showtime/BBC series "Episodes."

Perry most recently co-wrote with Peter Tolan and starred in the Showtime comedy pilot "The End of Steve" and appeared in the feature "17 Again." He is repped by CAA and Doug Chapin Management.

Barnow and Firek, who are under an overall deal at Sony, serve as co-exec producers on the studio's sitcom "Rules of Engagement." Last season, they worked in the same capacity on another Sony TV comedy, Fox's " 'Til Death." They're repped by UTA, manager Aaron Kaplan and attorney Ken Richman.

Schlamme, who has a one-year, first-look deal at Sony TV, is repped by CAA.