Michael J. Fox Returning to NBC; Network Orders 22 Episodes of his New Sit-Com Before Pilot is Shot

Categories: 1-Featured,Broadcast TV,Network TV Press Releases

Written By

August 20th, 2012

via press release:





Series – from Sony Pictures Television and Olive Bridge Entertainment – Will Follow a Husband and Father of Three from New York Dealing with Family, Career, and Challenges Loosely Drawn From Fox’s Real Life




UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. – August 20, 2012 – Iconic film and television star Michael J. Fox, a current double Emmy nominee, is making his long-awaited return to series television on NBC, the network where it all began 30 years ago with “Family Ties,” it was announced today by Robert Greenblatt, Chairman of NBC Entertainment. This new (untitled) comedy series, from Sony Pictures Television and Olive Bridge Entertainment, was given a 22-episode commitment and is loosely inspired by people and elements in Fox’s life.


“To bring Michael J. Fox back to NBC is a supreme honor and we are thrilled that one of the great comedic television stars is coming home again,” said Greenblatt. “From the moment we met with Michael to hear his unique point of view about this new show, we were completely captivated and on board. He is utterly relatable, optimistic, and in a class by himself, and I have no doubt that the character he will create – and the vivid family characters surrounding him – will be both instantly recognizable and hilarious. Being in business with him is a supreme pleasure.”


"We have all been such huge fans of Michaels and hoped one day he would return to television with his own show,” said Jennifer Salke, President of NBC Entertainment. “He had us at hello with his warmth, humor and incredible charisma. The fact that he pitched us a show that was funny, heartwarming and personal was the icing on the cake! We are over the moon and thankful Michael, Will (Gluck) and Sam (Laybourne) will be a cornerstone of our NBC comedy brand."


“I'm extremely pleased to be back at NBC with a great creative team and a great show,” said Fox. “Bob Greenblatt and all the folks at the network have given me a warm welcome home, and I'm excited to get to work.”


The single-camera series will begin filming this year for a Fall 2013 premiere date. It features Fox as a husband and father of three from New York City dealing with family, career, and challenges -- including Parkinson’s -- all loosely drawn from Fox’s real life. Further casting will be announced at a later date.


The executive producers and co-creators are Will Gluck (“Easy A,” “Friends with Benefits” “The Loop”) and Sam Laybourne (“Cougar Town,” “Arrested Development”), with Gluck producing through his Sony Television-based Olive Bridge Entertainment. Olive Bridge’s Richard Schwartz will co-executive produce. Gluck also will direct the pilot.


Fox, who is currently a two-time Emmy nominee for his guest-starring performances on “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and “The Good Wife,” first gained mass attention for his work as Alex Keaton on NBC’s popular “Family Ties” and won three Emmys and a Golden Globe Award. Major feature-film successes followed, including “Teen Wolf,” “Back to the Future,” “Bright Lights, Big City” and “Casualties of War.”


Fox later starred in the hit comedy series “Spin City,” for which he received another Emmy, three Golden Globes and two Screen Actors Guild Awards. He later appeared in two episodes of “Scrubs” and became a recurring regular on “Boston Legal,” earning another Emmy nomination. His other prominent TV appearances include “Rescue Me” (for which he won the Emmy as Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series) and recently in “The Good Wife,” which has earned him two Emmy nominations.


His other films include “The Frighteners,” “Doc Hollywood,” “The American President,” “Mars Attacks!” “Back to the Future II” and “Back to the Future III.” Fox also provided the voice to the title character in the animated film “Stuart Little” and its sequel.


Fox founded the Michael J. Fox Foundation, which is dedicated to finding a cure for sufferers of Parkinson’s disease while ensuring the development of improved therapies and raising public awareness of Parkinson’s.


Fox has written three NY Times best-sellers: “Lucky Man: A Memoir,” “Always Looking Up: The Adventures of an Incurable Optimist” and “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Future.”




Richard Licata, Executive Vice President, Communications for NBC Entertainment, 818/777-3368, richard.licata@nbcuni.com

Rebecca Marks, NBC Entertainment Publicity for NBC Entertainment, 818/777-3030, rebecca.marks@nbcuni.com




  • Oliver

    Not just before the pilot is shot, but before the pilot is even written. It’s only a pitch at this point.

  • Rex

    NBC should release a new slogan for this show.

    “NBC….we CAN screw this up.”

  • JDinCanada

    22 ep order before shooting the pilot ?

    yikes !

  • DamC

    Next step: NBC selling a show into syndication before shooting the pilot.

  • J.G.

    Next fall’s catchphrase
    NBC: And you thought we were desperate before!

  • Oliver

    A 22-episode straight-to-series order is just ridiculous.

    Straight-to-series network shows don’t exactly have a great track record. The Firm and Terra Nova both went straight-to-series last season, and the last NBC comedy that went straight-to-series was Kath & Kim.

  • jake3988

    I know Michael J Fox is awesome and one of the best actors on tv, but this seems more than a little silly.

    But then again, this is NBC. Who would’ve expected any less?

  • rob60990

    Moves like this is why NBC is in such a mess. The show doesn’t sound bad though.

  • Wes

    It will work out. MJF is so likable, and just because of sympathies people will watch a few episodes.

  • Oliver

    Since NBC are on the hook for 22-episodes regardless, I hope everybody involved uses it as an excuse to make something really smart and brilliant rather than Greenblatt’s idea of “broad”.

    Looking up, Parks & Recreation also went straight-to-series and it shows: the first season was pretty terrible.

  • Future Failure

    Another single-cam? NBC just doesn’t learn at all.

  • rob60990

    As long as it is funny, it should not matter if it is single or multi cam.

  • tv#1

    I am definitely going to watch. I love MJF.

  • Oliver

    @Future Failure

    Another single-cam? NBC just doesn’t learn at all.

    You’re an idiot. How do you expect Michael J. Fox to shoot a multicam with Parkinson’s?

  • Hustle, Loyalty, & Respect

    Nobody watches single-cams on that network so this will fail just like the rest of them.

  • Nick

    Thought this had potential, and thought it was a bold move. Then I saw the words “single-camera.” Disaster.

  • harry_milwood_1334

    Single-cams absolutely suck that’s why I didn’t watch Go On or Animal Practice after the Olympics honestly.

  • JohnM

    If you choose to watch a show based on the shooting style as opposed to say the writing, you’re a moron anyway

  • harry_milwood_1334


    I guess I’m a moron for not watching a show based on a shooting style but at least I know at the end of the day I made the right decision so you just watch that handicapped MF’er make a failure of a return to NBC. I will stay clear of that disaster.

  • Nick

    With this logic, it will be canceled before the pilot airs! ;-)

    There will be a lot of comparisons to Last Man Standing, also a single camera family comedy that was a comeback vehicle for a big TV & movie star. If it’s as good, I’ll check it out.

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