Epix inks deal with Larry Charles

Comedy vet to spearhead comedy for network

Pay cabler Epix is moving ahead with more original program development, inking a deal with comedy vet Larry Charles to spearhead a laffer set in Silicon Valley.

Charles will oversee the script for “Icon” to be penned by Dan Lyons, a technology consultant for Newsweek who also writes the popular Fake Steve Jobs blog. Project, produced by Media Rights Capital, is described as “savage satire centering on a fictional Silicon Valley CEO whose ego is a study in power and greed.”

“We are attempting to do nothing less than a modern ‘Citizen Kane’ — a scabrous satire of Silicon Valley and its most famous citizen,” Charles said in announcing the deal. “We needed a bold environment to nurture such a vision. And Epix made it clear they were that place.”

Charles is also on board to direct the pilot for “Icon.” Epix prexy Mark Greenberg said the project would be a good complement for the numerous standup comedy speshes it is producing.

In addition to “Icon,” Epix has lensed a drama pilot, “Tough Trade,” about a multigenerational family in the country music biz. The pilot produced by Epix partner Lionsgate has been completed but there’s no word yet on a formal series greenlight. The fledgling pay cabler owned by Lionsgate, Viacom and MGM is also developing a mini based on Ayn Rand’s epic novel “The Fountainhead.”

Lyons’ resume includes the novel “Options: The Secret Life of Steve Jobs — A Parody.”

Charles’ TV comedy resume includes stints on “Seinfeld,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and “Entourage.” His feature helming credits include Sacha Baron Cohen romps “Borat” and “Bruno.”

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