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The duo will star in Grace and Frankie, a 13-episode comedy series from Friends creator Marta Kauffman, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
From Skydance Productions (WGN’s Manhattan), the single-camera comedy centers on nemeses Grace (Fonda) and Frankie (Tomlin), whose lives are turned upside down when their husbands announce they are in love with each other and plan to get married. The women, much to their own dismay, find that their lives are permanently intertwined and, much to their surprise, they find they have each other.
The comedy, which will debut in 2015, is written and created by Kauffman and Howard J. Morris (TBS’ Sullivan & Son, According to Jim, Home Improvement). Kauffman, Morris, Paula Weinstein, Fonda, Tomlin and Skydance’s David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and Marcy Ross are on board to executive produce.
“Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin are among the funniest and most formidable actresses ever and it’s an incredible privilege to give them the opportunity to run riot on Netflix,” said Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos. “The show created for them by Marta and Howard is warm, very funny and anything but wholesome. We can’t wait.”
For Skydance, Grace and Frankie marks the TV division’s second series order and first comedy. It joins WGN’s John Benjamin Hickey atomic bomb drama Manhattan. On the film side, the company is also producing the Terminator reboot, due in July 2015, as well as Mission: Impossible 5. Skydance’s credits include Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, World War Z, Star Trek: Into Darkness and more.
“Netflix is redefining the way we produce and consume television and it’s a true privilege to be in business with Ted and his amazing team,” said Ellison. “Working with the wonderfully talented Marta, Jane, Lily, Howard and their producer Paula Weinstein is a dream come true, and the story they have crafted is both hilarious and heartfelt.”
The comedy comes 34 years after Fonda and Tomlin starred in 9 to 5. Fonda recently earned an Emmy nomination for her recurring guest role on HBO’s The Newsroom. She’s a two-time Oscar winner (Coming Home, Klute), Emmy winner (The Dollmaker) and Tony nominee. She most recently was seen in Lee Daniels’ The Butler and can currently be seen in Better Living Through Chemistry. She’s repped by CAA and Untitled. For her part, Tomlin earned an Oscar nomination (1975’s Nashville) and has won seven Emmys, most recently for her work on HBO’s telepic An Apology to Elephants. She’s won two Tony Awards, two Peabody Awards and the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Repped by WME, she co-starred last year with Tina Fey in Admission. She currently appears on Showtime’s Web Therapy and continues to perform 30-50 theater concerts across the country each year.
Kauffman has earned multiple Golden Globes and a comedy series Emmy for her work on NBC’s Friends. She also co-created Dream On for HBO and recently launched More Horses Productions. Under the shingle, Kauffman created Lifetime’s telepic Five, which featured five short films about breast cancer directed by a roster of all-stars including Jennifer Aniston and Patty Jenkins. She’s repped by WME.
Morris earned an Emmy for his work on Home Improvement and also created In Case of Emergency. Weinstein produced Too Big to Fail, which earned three Golden Globe nominations. Her credits include producing TV movies Truman and Recount, both of which won Emmys. She’s currently producing The Heart of the Sea and This Is Where I Leave You. She’s repped by CAA.
For Netflix, Grace and Frankie joins a rapidly growing roster of original scripted programming, including Emmy-nominated drama House of Cards, the fourth and final season of The Killing, Hemlock Grove, Lilyhammer, Arrested Development and the second season of Orange Is the New Black. The streaming service is also prepping an untitled family drama from the creators of Damages starring Kyle Chandler and Sissy Spacek, Marco Polo as well as four Marvel series — Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist and Luke Cage, as well as a miniseries, The Defenders.
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