Ari Graynor, star of recent big-screen comedy For A Good Time Call…, has been cast in the starring role for CBS’ upcoming small-screen version of Cameron Diaz’s 2011 comedy, Bad Teacher.
The single-camera comedy centers on Meredith Davis, a foul-mouthed divorcee who uses a career in teaching to land a new husband to provide her a life free of work or responsibility. Graynor will play Meredith, the role originated by Diaz.
Meredith is described as “a hot, confident and unapologetic trophy wife. She’s the kind of woman other women hate. But when her husband leaves her without a dime, the fantasy is over and she’s forced to get a job. When she hears there are a lot of rich single dads at a local middle school, she sets her sights on a teaching career.”
Graynor joins a cast that includes David Alan Grier as the school’s clueless principal. The script for the comedy pilot will be written by Community vet Hilary Winston, while the series will be a production of Sony Pictures Television. Bad Teacher screenwriters Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky will executive produce alongside Sam Hansen and Jimmy Miller.
Meanwhile, Josh Hamilton has scored the male lead in Bravo’s hourlong pilot, Rita, opposite Breaking Bad‘s Anna Gunn.
The drama follows Rita (Gunn), an “acerbic, outspoken private-school teacher who struggles to raise her three teenage children while dealing with the inane bureaucracy and overprotective parents at her school.” Hamilton will play Terrence, the principal of Cabbott Academy, who embarks on a relationship of convenience with the intrinsically sexy Rita.
The Fox TV Studios-produced drama, an adaptation of a Danish series, will be scripted by Krista Vernoff and directed by Miguel Arteta.
On the AMC side of things, True Blood alum Johnny Ray Gill has been cast as a regular on the upcoming third season of The Killing as Alton Singleterry, a low-level gangster who won’t let death row dampen his lively criminal spirit. Singleterry utilizes manipulation tactics to get what he wants, but he risks drawing the attention of forces greater than himself.
The third season of AMC’s resurrected crime drama follows Detective Sarah Linden (Mireille Enos) as she investigates the disappearance of yet another teenage girl. Gill will next be seen in the upcoming series Rectify for Sundance Channel.
Lastly, devotees of Christopher Guest films, and Home Alone fans, will recognize Emmy winner Catherine O’Hara, one of Hollywood’s most dependable character actors. O’Hara has now been offered a televised platform for her considerable talents, as the actress has joined FOX’s single-camera comedy pilot To My Future Assistant.
The series, based on the blog and upcoming book by Lydia Whitlock, revolves around the assistants at a big-time New York law firm who band together to help one another cope with the tyrannical bosses who test their limits on a daily basis. O’Hara will play Magda, an “accomplished, stylish and powerful lawyer, the kind of woman who pretends to be your friend — but isn’t.”
The pilot will be scripted by Sherry Bilsing-Graham & Ellen Kreamer, while Warner Bros. TV and Lin Pictures produce.