12:30pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Norman Lear Adapting Rain Pryor's 'Fried Chicken and Latkes' for TV (Exclusive)
Rain Pryor's one-woman show is headed for the small screen.
TV legend Norman Lear, Will Gluck and his Olive Bridge Entertainment banner and Global Road Entertainment are teaming up with Pryor — the daughter of late comedian Richard Pryor — to develop Fried Chicken and Latkes as a single-camera comedy. A network is not yet attached.
The semi-autobiographical Fried Chicken and Latkes starts with Pryor as a preteen trying to find her place in the world while growing up in 1970s Beverly Hills. Being biracial, half-Jewish and the daughter of the famous and troubled comedian, Pryor's identity is as big of a challenge as her outspoken, eccentric family life.
Directed by Eve Brandstein, the show played to sold out crowds every night at the 375-seat theater in Beverly Hills and repeated that success at the Culture Project in New York, Chicago, Ohio, Virginia, Texas, Scotland, Atlanta, Harlem, North Carolina and Santa Monica.
Pryor has since become a frequent panelist, discussing race, religion and spirituality, diversity in education and in the entertainment industry at Princeton University, The Jewish Federation of Los Angeles, Chicago and Baltimore.
Lear and his Act III Productions producing partner Brent Miller, Olive Bridge's Gluck and Richard Schwartz, Brandstein and Pryor will exec produce, with the latter set to pen the script.
"I am excited and honored to work with these powerful entertainment creators and Global Road to develop a show that will be a part of our culture's transformative lexico," Pryor said. "We are in a wonderful time where the multicultural voice and stories have a platform to teach and discover our commonalities. Fried Chicken and Latkes has been a 20-year journey, and Eve Brandstein was an intricate part in introducing me to my TV icon Norman Lear. Dreams do come true."
Fried Chicken and Latkes becomes Lear's latest TV foray. The four-time Emmy winner behind All in the Family and The Jeffersons recently earned a third-season renewal for Netflix's reboot of his One Day at a Time. He also has a pilot — Guess Who Died, starring Holland Taylor, Hector Elizondo and Christopher Lloyd — in contention at NBC this season and Epix docuseries America Divided. "Rain has one of the most unique and compelling coming-of-age stories I can recall," Lear said.
Olive Bridge's credits include features Easy A, Friends With Benefits and Annie. The TV unit's credits include CBS' The McCarthys. "Richard Pryor is one of my all-time comedy heroes, so I was instantly intrigued when I heard about Rain's play,” said Gluck. "Upon seeing her hilarious and moving show, I realized it was about so much more than a show business family. The story of a biracial child growing up against the backdrop of a tumultuous cultural and political time is still incredibly relevant today. I'm so excited to work with another one of my comedy icons in Norman Lear to bring Rain's singular voice to television."
Global Road is a worldwide studio that develops, finances and distributes entertainment across film, TV and digital platforms. It is owned by Tang Media Partners. "Rain's experiences as Richard Pryor's daughter and a mixed-race child in the '70s are extremely compelling. Stacey Levin on our team saw her one-woman show and immediately recognized the potential for television in Rain's poignantly funny story. We're honored to be working with her along with Norman, Brent, and Will on this unique project," said Mark Stern, Global Road president of scripted television.
Pryor is repped by Progressive Artists Agency.