Mandel show drops sidekick

Test shows weren't working out

It’ll be Howie Mandel sans sidekick when the comedian’s new syndie talkshow strip bows June 22.

Brianne Leary, an actress and former correspondent for ABC’s “Good Morning America,” had been tapped to serve as Mandel’s “announcer-sidekick” on the talk-variety show from Paramount Domestic TV (Daily Variety, May 12).

But a Par spokeswoman confirms that after a recent series of test shows, producers decided that the sidekick role wasn’t working out as well as they’d originally envisioned. As it stands now, Mandel will hold down the fort with some help from an on-camera ensemble that will include the show’s musical director, Steve Goldstein. Leary could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

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