While single-camera comedy pilot Little In Common didn't receive a series order this summer, it's still considered a strong contender for Fox's midseason. News of comedienne Heather Graham's casting can't hurt its chances.
Graham is replacing Paula Marshall of Californication and Gary Unmarried as a mom whose group of friends is held together by their children. She'll be playing opposite Rob Corddry, whom you might not recognize as that creepy clown doctor from Adult Swim's Childrens Hospital.
The pilot comes from 90210 and Veronica Mars writer Rob Thomas, by way of Warner Bros. Television. After the initial presentation wasn't picked up for a full season, the production was sent back for retooling. A new pilot will be made with Graham in her starring role.
Graham hasn't had a steady television role since 2006 when she starred in Emily's Reason's Why Not. And who could blame her: due to controversy over the show's subject material and a lackluster opening, ABC yanked it off the schedule after a single episode. Prior to that, she had a memorable recurring role on Scrubs (which, by the way, was shot at the same defunct hospital where Corddry stars in Childrens Hospital, among many, many others).
In the meantime, Graham has been busy on the silver screen. Easily her highest-profile role of late was Jade in the surprise hit The Hangover in 2009. This year she starred in the kids-focused flop Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer, with a few comedy and indie projects in between.
While it's never a good sign when a show is passed over during the pilot season, somebody at Fox clearly believes in Little In Common. A relatively high-profile actress like Graham will make the project much more appealing - not to mention expensive. Other players attached include Alanna Ubach (Men of a Certain Age, recently cancelled), Kevin Hart (of the lately regrettable Scary Movie franchise and its offspring) and Gabrielle Union (FlashForward).
With a target of early next year, expect a decision from Fox after they see the second pilot for Little In Common in the next month or two.
Follow Michael on Twitter: @MichaelCrider
Source: The Hollywood Reporter