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In a high profile twist, Aaron Sorkin’s TV pilot is close to nabbing actor Jeff Daniels as its star.
The hotly anticipated drama pilot, tentatively titled More As the Story Develops, is set behind the scenes of a nightly cable news show, just as Sorkin’s Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip was a behind-the-scenes look at a Saturday Night Live-type sketch comedy show and Sports Night was a similar take on a SportsCenter-like sports news program. Sorkin spent time with high profile cable newsmen, including Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews, among others, to better understand the world he planned to recreate.
Daniels, 56, is currently negotiating for the lead role, which was originally written as a 40-something.
If the project goes to series, it will mark the actor’s first foray into regular series television. Previous TV credits include several telefilms, including 2008’s Sweet Nothing in My Ear for Hallmark Channel. Daniels is better known to stage and film audiences, for a profilic career that includes Dumb & Dumber, The Squid and the Whale to State of Play, among many others.
For Sorkin, who won an Oscar last month for his screenplay for The Social Network, the project will be his first in cable. All three of his previous series, Sports Night, The West Wing and Studio 60, aired on a broadcast network (the first on ABC; the latter two on NBC). Scott Rudin, who worked with Sorkin on Social Network and will also serve as an executive producer on the HBO project, dabbled in series television only once in the mid-1990s, when ABC adapted Clueless, which he had produced for the big screen.
Daniels is repped by ICM and manager Paul Martino.
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