'Family Tree' project being shopped to U.S. and U.K. buyers
NBCUniversal Intl. Television is developing a comedy series with Christopher Guest that is eyed as a U.S.-U.K. co-production to air on both sides of the Pond.“Family Tree” revolves around a man who sets out to learn more about his family’s roots after his great-aunt dies and leaves him a trunk full of photographs. London-based NBCU Intl. TV production prexy Michael Edelstein and the division’s L.A.-based exec veep, Deborah Oppenheimer, have been pitching the project to prospective U.S. buyers this week. Guest would star in and produce the series alongside his frequent collaborator Jim Piddock. The plan is to produce the episodes with the actors working from outlines in the same improv style that Guest has used in his mockumentary features including, “For Your Consideration,” “A Mighty Wind” and “Best in Show.” Oppenheimer has had a long relationship with Guest and has been developing the project with Mario Stylianides of NBCU Intl. TV’s Lucky Giant Prods. “Chris Guest is one of the funniest people on earth and everyone at NBCUniversal International is delighted to be working with him and Jim Piddock,” Edelstein told Variety. Project has already generated significant buzz among U.K. TV buyers. Guest and Piddick will serve as exec producers along with Karen Murphy, who has worked on a number of Guest movies.