'Wonder Years' vet to portray nerd hero

Daniel Stern, who was the voice of the adult narrator Kevin Arnold on “The Wonder Years,” has signed on to play the voice of “Dilbert” for UPN’s animated version of the comic strip.

UPN has ordered 13 episodes of “Dilbert” from Columbia TriStar TV. The toon will probably be ready for a midseason launch by next January.

The series is executive produced by “Dilbert” comic strip creator Scott Adams, and former “Mad About You” executive producer and “Seinfeld” supervising producer Larry Charles.

” We expect Daniel Stern’s voice to become as much a trademark for the show as Dilbert’s starched white shirt, upturned necktie and thick black glasses,” said Tom Nunan, UPN’s executive VP of entertainment.

“Many of us had the pleasure of working with Daniel Stern during the run of the ‘The Wonder Years,’ ” said Eric Tannenbaum, president Columbia TriStar TV. “We’re delighted we can once again count on his incredible talent as we bring ‘Dilbert’ to the small screen.”

Several Columbia TriStar TV executives, including Tannenbaum, Columbia TriStar TV Group president Jon Feltheimer and executive VP Helene Michaels, used to work for the production company behind “The Wonder Years,” New World Entertainment.

Aside from narrating ABC’s “The Wonder Years,” Stern has starred in several feature films, including “Home Alone,” “Home Alone II: Lost in New York,” “City Slickers,” “City Slickers II: The Legend of Curly’s Gold” and “Diner.”

He also directed 10 episodes of “The Wonder Years,” and helmed and starred in the feature “Rookie of the Year.”

Stern last fall signed a development deal with ABC, but the pact lapsed earlier this year after he couldn’t find a project there he liked, sources said. Stern is repped by Andy Cohen and Joe Funicello at ICM.

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