Steve Coogan To Star In New ‘Happyish’ Pilot For Showtime

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Steve CooganEight months after original lead Phillip Seymour Hoffman passed away, Showtime has announced plans to move forward with comedy Happyish.

The premium cable network has ordered a new pilot, which will see Steve Coogan (Alan Partridge) succeeding Hoffman as the lead, TVWise has learned.

Happyish follows Thom Payne (Steve Coogan), a 44 year-old man whose world is thrown into disarray when his 25 year-old “wunderkind” boss arrives, saying things like “digital,” “social” and “viral.” Is he in need of a “rebranding,” as his mentor insists, or does he just have a “low joy ceiling,” as his corporate headhunter suggests? Maybe pursuing happiness is a fool’s errand? Maybe, after 44 years on this ludicrous planet, settling for happyish is the best one can expect.

Due to the 8 months that have passed, it is presently unclear how many members of the original cast will return for this new pilot. The previous version starred Hoffman, Kathryn Hahn and Rhys Ifans, and was handed a series order in January 2014. A month later, Phillip Seymour Hoffman passed away and Showtime took some time to decide on the future of the project, before recently opting to begin the search for a new lead.

Happyish was created by Shalom Auslander and developed by Ken Kwapis, who directs and will executive produce through his Cahoots banner. Kwapis’ producing partner Alexandra Beattie co-executive produces. Production on the new Happyish pilot is expected to commence in New York City this December.