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ABC is continuing to bet big on diversity.
The network on Friday handed out a series order to its African-American-led remake of Uncle Buck, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Based on John Hughes‘ 1989 movie, the comedy centers on Uncle Buck (Mike Epps) a fun-loving but irresponsible guy who needs a job and place to stay. By happy coincidence, his nieces and nephew’s nanny has just quit, and his brother and sister-in-law need his help. His unconventional personality just may make him the right fit for the family, and they may be the answer to his problems, too.
Nia Long, James Lesure, Iman Benson, Sayeed Shahidi and Aalyrah Caldwell round out the cast.
The comedy was written by Steven Cragg and Brian Bradley (Happy Endings), who exec produce alongside Will Packer and his Will Packer Productions topper Korin Huggins as well as Phil Traill. The series is a co-production between ABC Studios and Universal Television, with the latter’s Universal Pictures owning the rights to the movie.
Buck was one of many remakes being developed this past year, as the broadcast networks looked for ways to cut through the growing clutter with pre-sold names and premises. Among the remakes that went to pilot, CBS’ Rush Hour and Limitless both look good, and Fox is expected to pickup its Minority Report take.
For ABC, the Uncle Buck pickup comes as the network has bet big — and won viewers — with multiple series fronted by more diverse casts. Those include comedies Black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat — both renewed for second seasons.
Uncle Buck becomes ABC’s fourth comedy order for the 2015-16 season. It joins Asian-American family comedy Dr. Ken, The Real O’Neals and its Muppets reboot. For Packer, meanwhile, Uncle Buck joins NBC comedy People Are Talking — giving the Ride Along producer two shows on the schedule next season, following his first year producing for the small screen.
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