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‘House’ Q&A: ‘You live alongside your characters’

Housecast Posted by Kathy Lyford

Here are the answers to your questions for House co-showrunner Katie Jacobs. She was pretty selective with the queries and answered the five that inspired her the most.

The show, about cranky diagnostician Dr. Gregory House and his co-workers and patients, has continued to rack up awards, most recently garnering is two Golden Globe nominations last week, for best drama series and lead actor Hugh Laurie, and two SAG nominations — for Laurie and the ensemble — just this morning.

Jacobs shares showrunner duties with David Shore — he runs the writers’ room and she oversees the non-writing aspects of the show. She has also directed several episodes including “Half-Wit” with guest star Dave Matthews as well as the finale of both seasons three and four and this season’s ninth episode — “Last Resort” — guest-starring Zeljko Ivanek, which aired Nov. 25.

Previously, Jacobs served as co-showrunner on ABC’s “Gideon’s Crossing,” starring the incomparable Andre Braugher, as well as CBS legal drama “Century City.” Before turning her focus to television, Jacobs produced several films, including Alan J. Pakula’s thriller “Consenting Adults” and the Carl Reiner comedy “Fatal Instinct.”

We’ll start with the winning question. Diane will receive a DVD set of season four.

Q. How common is it for a non-writing producer to be a co-showrunner? It seems to make sense, since showrunning sounds like a huge job involving a lot of non-writing producing duties, but it doesn’t seem that common. Are you an anomaly? How do you split the duties with David Shore? — Diane
A. I feel like the show is best served by allowing David Shore and his writing staff as much writing time as possible. It is the voice of the show that makes it unique, the script and the words are king. Having said that, there are many other factors that contribute in making the show what it is. I spend most of my time casting, in post-production editing, selecting music, meeting with directors, writers, the network and actors… it’s a lot. But it’s an honor to run a show alongside David Shore.

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