Wind Dancer Production Group confirmed that Felicity Huffman will be replaced on the upcoming ABC comedy series “Thunder Alley.”Huffman, best known for her role in the Broadway production of “Speed-the-Plow,” was cast opposite star Ed Asner in an “Alley” prototype shot last month (Daily Variety, Nov. 12). No replacement has been selected, and a new first episode will be shot in January, with plans to go into continuous production at that time toward a spring series bow. Huffman was to play the daughter of Asner’s character, who moves back home, along with her kids, after a divorce. The casting “just ultimately was the wrong match,” said Wind Dancer prez Rick Leed, noting that the change wouldn’t delay the series, which wasn’t supposed to premiere until at least March. “Thunder Alley” is the first sitcom under a two-series deal between ABC and Wind Dancer, which produces “Home Improvement.” Principals Matt Williams, DavidMcFadzean and Carmen Finestra are exec producers on both shows. ABC will finance and own a piece of the two new series, with Disney acting as the distributor. Because of ABC’s relationship with Wind Dancer, the expectation is that “Thunder Alley” will command a timeslot leading into “Home” at 8:30 Wednesday.
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