Wiener, Schwartz sign on for two years
“American Dad” exec producers Rick Wiener and Kenny Schwartz are cementing their bond with 20th Century Fox TV, inking a rich overall deal with the studio behind the animated hit.
Pact, which runs for a guaranteed two years with an option for a third, keeps the scribes on “Dad” for at least another season. Skein was recently renewed through 2008-09 (Daily Variety, June 21).
“It’s really a terrific workplace,” Wiener said. “They’ve been really good to us. This deal lets us focus on ‘American Dad.’ ”
Wiener and Schwartz will also develop projects exclusively for 20th. Duo said they’re already mulling possibilities, including a return to the romantic comedy form. The scribes got their start on 1990s laffer “Mad About You.”
“Rick and I will do our best to get a show on the air,” said Schwartz.
Deal marks an official reunion for Wiener, Schwartz and 20th. Nearly a decade ago, studio developed ABC’s “Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place” with the scribes.
Gary Newman, prexy of 20th Century Fox TV, said the studio has “kept an eye” on the pair since they left after “Pizza.”
“We thought they had tremendous talent, so when we had a chance to put them on ‘American Dad,’ we jumped,” he said. “They’ve always written with a youthful point of view. It was understandable (on ‘Pizza’) because they were so young. But they’ve kept that male-skewing, youthful point of view. That’s a voice that ought to work well in the comedy marketplace.”
Although they’ve enjoyed the animation world, Wiener and Schwartz said they’re itching to do another live-action comedy, either single- or multicam.
“This is a different process and a fun process, but I can’t say we don’t miss going down to a stage once in a while, talking to actors and rewriting dialogue on the fly,” Wiener said.
Scribe added that he and Schwartz have always liked 20th’s approach to development.
“We wrote ‘Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place’ on spec,” Wiener said. “The studio read it and said ‘Great, let’s get it done.’ We appreciate that sort of attitude — ‘we see it and we like it.'”
Wiener and Schwartz’s other credits include “Do Over” and “Like Family.”