Due to his battle with Parkinson’s disease, Michael J. Fox hasn’t been acting as much as he might want. However, that hasn’t stopped Fox from making fantastic, Emmy-nominated, guest turns on series like The Good Wife, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Rescue Me – the latter of which actually won him the coveted TV award. Now it sounds like the actor is ready to get back on the small screen full time.
Vulture has learned that Fox is developing a new comedy series at Sony Pictures Television with Easy A director Will Gluck and writer Sam Laybourne (Cougar Town, Arrested Development) on board to get the show ready to launch in 2013.
Plot details on the series are slim, but it’s reportedly inspired by Fox’s own life. Word on the street is all the major networks are going crazy in a bidding war to get ahold of this series, and a automatic pilot production deal is very likely. But even more crazy is the buzz that it might be big enough to get a straight to series order, something that is a rarity on network television these days.
The kind of attention surrounding the new comedy isn’t all that surprising considering that Fox’s career on television is almost as big as his film career. Spin City was a revered comedy in its heyday, and it actually earned Fox an Emmy nomination four years in a row, with a win to wrap up his final season on the series. In addition, Fox was a staple of the classic family sitcom Family Ties, not to mention other phenomenal guest spots on Scrubs and Boston Legal.
Michael J. Fox in his Emmy-winning turn as a paraplegic in Rescue Me
The question is just how much of Fox’s real life will be injected into this series. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a show about a father struggling with the afflictions of Parkinson’s disease, and it might even be a fictionalized version of himself, working in entertainment. This is all speculation, but knowing how much work Fox has been doing with his own foundation to help find a cure for the debilitating disease – including writing several memoirs that deal with his condition – the series could be very personal.
Personally, I can’t wait to see what Fox brings to television. Spin City was one of my favorite comedy series in the ’90s, and the actor just has so much charisma and great comedic timing combined with solid dramatic chops, so I can’t help but love anything he does. Teaming with a director like Will Gluck, who made a teenage comedy reminiscent of John Hughes, and a writer who worked on a cult comedy like Arrested Development (and the sleeper hit comedy series Cougar Town) sounds like a great move for Fox’s return to TV. I’m betting his fans of all ages are eager to see him back in the acting game on a more regular basis. Stay tuned for more information as it becomes available.