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The network has given a pilot-production commitment to The United States of Al, a multicamera comedy about the friendship between a Marine combat veteran and his unit’s Afghan interpreter, who has newly arrived in America.
David Goetsch and Maria Ferrari, executive producers with Lorre on The Big Bang Theory, are writing the pilot. They will executive produce with Lorre, religious scholar, author and TV host Reza Aslan and Mahyad Tousi. The series comes from Chuck Lorre Productions and Warner Bros. TV, where both Lorre and Ferrari are based.
The United States of Al will follow the friendship between Riley, a Marine who is struggling to readjust to civilian life in Ohio, and Awalmir (Al), the Afghan interpreter who served with his unit and has just come to the U.S. to start a new life.
CBS has committed to producing a pilot for the show, which would look to join three other Lorre shows — Big Bang Theory prequel Young Sheldon, Mom and first-year show Bob Hearts Abishola — on the network’s roster. Lorre also exec produces The Kominsky Method, starring Michael Douglas and Alan Arkin, for Netflix.
Bob Hearts Abishola followed a similar development path last year, snaring a pilot-production commitment in October 2018 on its way to a series order. The show airs Mondays on CBS.
Aslan and Tousi founded BoomGen Studios, which focuses on content by and about the people and cultures of the Middle East, Central and South Asia and North Africa. The company produced the 2016 ABC drama Of Kings and Prophets. Aslan, author of the best-selling No God But God and two other books about religion, was also a consulting producer on HBO’s The Leftovers.
The United States of Al joins a CBS development slate that includes the comedies Fun from Michael Patrick King; UNprofessionals from Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg; Pretty, from Santina Muha and Lindsey Kraft and executive produced by former Big Bang Theory star Kaley Cuoco; and an untitled show from Fam and In the Dark creator Corinne Kingsbury. The David E. Kelley drama The Lincoln Lawyer, based on Michael Connelly’s books, has a series-production commitment attached.
Deadline first reported the news.
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