‘Seinfeld’ alum Alexander hits Alphabet web

Doyle to be project's showrunner

By George, ABC’s got Jason Alexander.

Alphabet web Thursday nailed the rights to “Bob Patterson,” a half-hour laffer in which the former “Seinfeld” sidekick will star as an over-the-top motivational speaker whose own life is extremely dysfunctional. ABC has made a pilot commitment to the project, agreeing to a seven-figure penalty if the 20th Century Fox Television/Touchstone Television co-production is not ordered to series.

Former “Ellen” exec producer Tim Doyle will serve as showrunner for the project. Doyle, Peter Tilden and Ira Behr will write the pilot script; Alexander is also on board as an exec producer.

Alexander’s deal comes a week after another ex-“Seinfeld” regular, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, pacted with NBC for a half-hour comedy pilot.

ABC Entertainment Television co-chairman Lloyd Braun said the network and Alexander are aware that any project a “Seinfeld” alum does will be compared to his previous gig.

“We know the bar is high with Jason, but he has a unique voice, and we’re really confident we can do something very special with him,” Braun said. “He comes off of a fantastic television show, and we all spent a lot of time talking about how the expectations for him are very, very high. We all want to do a show that meets those expectations — no one more so than Jason.”

Deal for “Bob Patterson” took a while to negotiate in part because of the decision to bring on Doyle, who currently has an overall deal with Touchstone. Alexander already had a multiyear pact with 20th, requiring the pilot to be a co-production between the two studios.

Braun credited lawyer Michael Gendler with helping seal the pact.

“Michael Gendler was instrumental in making this happen. He played a key role in packaging and negotiating what turned out to be a very complicated deal,” Braun said.

In addition to “Bob Patterson,” Doyle is also exec producing “Straight White Male,” a comedy pilot from 20th in development at FX.

More TV

  • AMERICAN IDOL - "118 (Performance Finals)"

    'American Idol': The Final Three and What You Didn't See on TV

    By George, ABC’s got Jason Alexander. Alphabet web Thursday nailed the rights to “Bob Patterson,” a half-hour laffer in which the former “Seinfeld” sidekick will star as an over-the-top motivational speaker whose own life is extremely dysfunctional. ABC has made a pilot commitment to the project, agreeing to a seven-figure penalty if the 20th Century […]

  • DJ Khaled ad Khalid arrive at

    TV Review: Billboard Music Awards Sober Up Over Gun Violence, Suicide, #MeToo

    By George, ABC’s got Jason Alexander. Alphabet web Thursday nailed the rights to “Bob Patterson,” a half-hour laffer in which the former “Seinfeld” sidekick will star as an over-the-top motivational speaker whose own life is extremely dysfunctional. ABC has made a pilot commitment to the project, agreeing to a seven-figure penalty if the 20th Century […]

  • 'Westworld' Recap — Season 2, Episode

    'Westworld' Recap: Shogun's Army Comes to Town

    By George, ABC’s got Jason Alexander. Alphabet web Thursday nailed the rights to “Bob Patterson,” a half-hour laffer in which the former “Seinfeld” sidekick will star as an over-the-top motivational speaker whose own life is extremely dysfunctional. ABC has made a pilot commitment to the project, agreeing to a seven-figure penalty if the 20th Century […]

  • Bhad Bhabie

    Bhad Bhabie: From 'Cash Me Outside' to Cashing In on a Legit Rap Career

    By George, ABC’s got Jason Alexander. Alphabet web Thursday nailed the rights to “Bob Patterson,” a half-hour laffer in which the former “Seinfeld” sidekick will star as an over-the-top motivational speaker whose own life is extremely dysfunctional. ABC has made a pilot commitment to the project, agreeing to a seven-figure penalty if the 20th Century […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content