8:15am PT by Lacey Rose
Ben Silverman Acquires Rights to Popular New York Observer Column for TV
"Isn't That Rich?" may be making a leap to TV.
Ben Silverman and Suretone Pictures' Jordan Schur have acquired the rights to Richard Kirshenbaum's monthly New York Observer column "Isn't That Rich?" and 2015 essay collection, Isn't that Rich?: Life Among the 1%. As the title suggests, the author chronicles the lives of Manhattan's upper crust with a healthy dose of humor.
Fittingly, Silverman and Schur have turned to TV writer Amy Harris, best known for her work on another trio of series centered on the lives of New York City's elite: Sex and the City, Gossip Girl and The Carrie Diaries, for the series adaptation. She'll write and executive produce via her deal at ABC Studios, where the potential show is set up. It's expected to be pitched to cable players and streamers.
If ultimately successful, Kirshenbaum, a longtime ad exec, could follow in the footsteps of another New York Observer columnist, Candace Bushnell, whose "Sex and the City" dispatches became the basis for one of HBO's most iconic series. Until now, Kirshenbaum's Hollywood experience has been largely onscreen, with appearances on The Simple Life, Morgan Spurlock's The Greatest Movie Ever Sold and as host of Plum TV's Creative Lunch.
The news comes as Silverman's future at his own IAC-based Electus remains in question. Not that it's stopped the prolific producer from continuing to sell projects at an enviable clip. His current roster includes a mix of scripted (CW's Jane the Virgin, Netflix's Flaked) and unscripted (NBC's Running Wild With Bear Grylls, TBS' Separation Anxiety), with several more projects in development.