Comedian Kevin Hart is a rising star, with his energetic, motor-mouth persona proving a draw in the stand-up realm with his popular specials Laugh At My Pain and Let Me Explain. He co-starred this year in the buddy comedy Ride Along with Ice Cube, the comedy sequel Think Like A Man Too (featuring an ensemble that includes Hart) is coming up, and he'll be working with basketball star LeBron James on the big-screen B-ball comedy Ballers.
It was only a matter of time before the mainstream networks started sniffing around, so it's not much of a surprise that Hart has made a television deal, but not necessarily as the star of the show.
Deadline reports that Hart will produce a multi-camera comedy (read: sitcom) for ABC, loosely based on his life and stand-up act. The series has a "cast-contingent" pilot order from the network, and will be written by Neil Goldman and Garrett Donovan, two former executive producers for Community.
As for the premise, the untitled comedy:
...takes a candid look at the post-divorce life of a couple trying to forge a friendship for the sake of their kids, despite differences.
Hart will reportedly take a recurring role in the series if ABC puts in a series order, but he apparently will not be the show's lead. The comedian has been associated with a number of stars, appearing as himself in Seth Rogen's apocalyptic meta-comedy This Is The End, co-starring in Hot Tub Time Machine director Steve Pink's remake of About Last Night, and has a role in Nick Cannon's feature directorial debut School Dance. There is no word on who the series will center on, be it an established name or a newcomer.
Recurring bits of Hart's stand-up routine have to do with his real-life insecurities and hang-ups, as well as his upbringing - raised by a single mother, he also had to contend with his jailbird, cocaine-addict father. Hart plays up the funny during these stories about his tough childhood, so they would work well on a comedy series... on almost any other network. Disney-owned ABC has a long history of sanding down the rough edges of much of its series, so expect Hart's show to be more family-friendly than much of his stand-up.
Kevin Hart's untitled ABC comedy series is in development. Expect casting updates soon.