Animated 'Stories' jumps to small screen
Jerry Seinfeld book buddy Ed Broth is looking to bring his “Stories From a Moron” to the small screen via 20th Century Fox TV.Studio has optioned the rights to “Moron” and pacted with former “Seinfeld” scribe Barry Marder and Kenneth Braun to pen an animated comedy pilot script based on the book. Per Marder, Broth is also set to write the pilot script as part of the six-figure deal. No network is yet attached. “Moron” is a collection of short stories submitted by Broth to wildly inappropriate magazines, such as an article dubbed “I Love Dogs” that’s sent to an editor at I Love Cats magazine. Book also contains correspondences between Broth and flabbergasted editors. Animated laffer would focus on the fictional world created by Broth in the letters and stories. In his correspondence, Broth passes himself off as a traveling salesman from the fictional town of Cumberland City. The TV version, described as a “deranged ‘Andy Griffith Show,’ ” would focus on his interactions in that world. Still unclear: Just how much, if any, involvement Seinfeld might have with the TV version of “Moron” — and whether Broth is a real person or a pseudonym. Seinfeld is tied to the book, having penned the introduction and hosted a star-studded dinner party for it last April in Gotham. Broth didn’t attend the bash (though Rupert Murdoch, whose News Corp. owns 20th Century Fox TV, did). Interestingly, Seinfeld also wrote introductions for the comedy book “Letters From a Nut” and its two sequels. All three tomes were penned by Ted L. Nancy, who’s as media shy as Broth. Since the “Nut” books were published, there’s been speculation that Nancy is actually Seinfeld, or his longtime friend Marder (or perhaps a combination of both). There’s been similar buzz about the identity of Broth since “Moron” hit bookstores earlier this year. ABC developed a TV take on “Nut” three years ago via the net’s alternative department. Marder was involved in that project as well, with Seinfeld described at the time as an “enthusiastic supporter” (Daily Variety, May 29, 2002). Marder — a writer on Seinfeld’s upcoming “Bee Movie” — has denied that he’s either Nancy or Broth, telling Daily Variety via email that Broth is unavailable for comment since he is “vacationing in San Quentin.” Deal with 20th comes just a few weeks after Marder inked with WMA for representation.