Saturday Night Live alum Jay Pharoah has been cast in Showtime comedy pilot White Famous, the network announced today.
Executive produced by Oscar winner Jamie Foxx and Tom Kapinos (Californication), White Famous tells the story of talented, on the rise African-American comedian Floyd (Pharoah) as he tries to maintain his credibility while courting a larger audience. The series will be showran by Tim Story, the highest-grossing African-American director of all time and the man behind the Think Like a Man and Ride Along film franchises. Aside from directing episodes, Story’s only television experience came in 2006 as an executive producer on FOX drama Standoff.
White Famous is one of a handful of comedy pilots in contention at Showtime, which is dealing with the loss (or impending loss) of House of Lies, Episodes, and Dice. With Nurse Jackie, Happyish, and Web Therapy all ending last year, respectively, it’s a time of comedic rebirth at Showtime and whoever makes it on air next could potentially define what a present Showtime comedy actually is. Also in contention with White Famous are SMILF, about a 20-something single mother struggling to reconcile her age and career standing with her responsibility; Mating, a dating anthology; and Manhunt, said to be an action two-hander.
In addition to his time on Saturday Night Live, Pharoah’s television credits include Above Average Presents and Portlandia.
Would you be willing to watch White Famous? Do you think this sounds like a project in line with Showtime’s scripted brand? Who would you like to see fill out the cast with Pharoah?