One of TV’s most problem-addled comedies has another problem to add to its roster.
Christina Applegate, the co-lead of the series, has left NBC’s ‘Up All Night’.
This comes not long after a change in showrunners led to the announcement that the show would be retooled into a multi-camera comedy filmed in front of a live studio audience.
“It’s been a great experience working on Up All Night, but the show has taken a different creative direction and I decided it was best for me to move on to other endeavors,” Applegate said. “Working with Lorne Michaels has been a dream come true and I am grateful he brought me into his TV family. I will miss the cast, producers and crew, and wish them the best always.”
Applegate’s exit is hardly the first significant blow to the series, as creator/executive producer Emily Spivey left the show amid all the behind-the-scenes turmoil the show has experienced since original showrunner Jon Pollack left last May. Pollack’s replacement, Tucker Cawley, was almost immediately replaced by Linda Wallem. The decision was made to turn ‘Up All Night’ into a multi-camera comedy after the first 11 episodes of Season 2 returned dismal ratings.
NBC Entertainment president Jennifer Salke touted the show’s all-star cast (Applegate, Will Arnett and Maya Rudolph) at TCAs last month, citing the stars as the primary reason the network has stuck with the show. “We know that that talented cast of actors, they’re not growing on trees,” she said, proclaiming the multi-camera revamp “a bit of an experiment” but “one worth taking.”
Regarding Applegate’s exit, NBC had no comment, although word is that the network will move forward with the series anyway, perhaps going as far as to replace Applegate altogether. From these sources, it’s said that ‘Friends’ alumna Lisa Kudrow is in consideration as a potential replacement, while conflicting sources insist that the show is now dead. Applegate, meanwhile, won’t be hurting for work, as she begins filming the Anchorman sequel this month.
None of the five episodes of the multi-camera version of ‘Up All Night’ have been filmed, and right now, it’s anyone’s guess if they ever will be.
Full story: Deadline