Shepherd signs for CBS sitcom

CBS has made a deal with the Carsey-Werner Co. for a sitcom to star Cybill Shepherd for the 1994-95 season.

The project would be exec produced by the actress and producer Jay Daniel, who recently gave up his exec producer role on Carsey-Werner’s “Roseanne” after a four-year stint.

The show, whose concept remains sketchy at this point, reunites Shepherd and Daniel, who were teamed on “Moonlighting” during the one-hour series’ 1985-89 run on ABC.

Since that show, Shepherd has starred in such features as “Chances Are” and “Texasville.” She’s also appeared in the ABC movie “Stormy Weathers” and the miniseries “Telling Secrets.”

Word circulated during development season last year that Shepherd was being shopped around by her representatives at United Talent Agency for a series that she would star in and produce.

NBC, in fact, was planning a pilot with Shepherd prior to CBS snatching away the deal. Although reportedly miffed about the CBS pact, NBC noted that the web still has a movie in the works to star the actress.

CBS has already made another series commitment for next season on another single-female-lead sitcom, “Dixie Fixin’s,” to star Dolly Parton, from Parton’s Sandollar Prods. and Disney TV (Daily Variety, Dec. 2).

Both shows would seem logical candidates, depending on how they’re received, for berths in the web’s Monday lineup — at this point, its lone comedy stronghold.

Carsey-Werner has a history of trying to create franchises around talent, from the current “Roseanne” and “Grace Under Fire” to less successful entries like “Chicken Soup” (with Jackie Mason) and last year’s short-lived CBS comedy “Frannie’s Turn,” which stemmed from an earlier CBS series commitment to the company.

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