×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

The Building

Bonnie Hunt's sitcom about a jilted actress returning to her Chi apartment house and its denizens may seem unlikely, and it is -- but it is also inspired. Snappy patter, good setups and, for the most part, sharp characters are on the plate. Looks like the hurt bride and her friends will prove a cheery addition to the CBS lineup.

With:
Cast: Bonnie Hunt, Michael G. Hag-erty, Richard Kuhlman, Don Lake, Tom Virtue , Holly Wortell, George Clooney.

Bonnie Hunt’s sitcom about a jilted actress returning to her Chi apartment house and its denizens may seem unlikely, and it is — but it is also inspired. Snappy patter, good setups and, for the most part, sharp characters are on the plate. Looks like the hurt bride and her friends will prove a cheery addition to the CBS lineup.

Bonnie (Hunt), doing teleblurbs for a living, consults with best friend Holly (Holly Wortell) about, well, life; plus, good neighbors like actor Stanley (Tom Virtue), fireman-bartender Finley (Michael G. Hagerty), foul-mouthed (and bleeped) Big Tony (Richard Kuhlman) and columnist-without-a-column Brad (Don Lake) offer consolations on her Big Secret — that fiance Jim (George Clooney) dropped her.

The program zips through the first-class dialogue under John Bowab’s skillful direction, and scripter Hunt gives the sitcom a buoyant style that should keep “The Building” way up there. Wortell’s role as the girlfriend is a good foil for Bonnie, and Virtue’s Stanley has an attractive, ready wit.

Hagerty’s fireman-bartender Finley isn’t in this first episode enough to judge, but Lake’s Brad has been written too broadly. Kuhlman’s Big Tony has possibilities, and Clooney’s guest stint as the fiance who got away adds solid balance to the sitcom’s pilot. As for Hunt, her delivery’s assured, her body lingo on target. Bonnie’s apartment looks out at the baseball stadium, so the scripters incorporate Wrigley Field as a prop. Looks like “The Building” will be around as long as the writing and action match this level.

The Building

(Fri. (20), 9:30-10 p.m., CBS-TV)

Production: Taped in L.A. by Bob and Alice Prods., Worldwide Pants Inc. and CBS Entertainment Prods. Exec producers, Bonnie Hunt, David Letterman; supervising producer, Elaine Arata; producer, Robert Wright; director, John Bowab; writer, Hunt.

Crew: Editor, Rich Blankenship; art director, Chris Idoine; consulting art director, Roy Christopher; sound, Otto Svoboda; theme, Rob Kolson.

Cast: Cast: Bonnie Hunt, Michael G. Hag-erty, Richard Kuhlman, Don Lake, Tom Virtue , Holly Wortell, George Clooney.

More TV

  • 'The Crown': Josh O'Connor, Erin Doherty

    'The Crown': Josh O'Connor, Erin Doherty on Charles and Anne 'Breaking the Mold'

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “The Crown” Season 3 on Netflix. The arrivals Prince Charles (Josh O’Connor) and Princess Anne (Erin Doherty) midway through “The Crown’s” third season infuse the show with a youthful energy reminiscent of the first two years. But, they also offer a sense of rebelliousness, shaking [...]

  • SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- "Harry Styles"

    Harry Styles Premieres New Song, Plays Trash-Eating Dog on ‘Saturday Night Live’ (Watch)

    The past couple of seasons of “Saturday Night Live” have seen some impressive hosting/musical performer double-duty stints, including Childish Gambino, Halsey and Chance the Rapper — and last night Harry Styles was more than up to the challenge. The singer appeared in nearly every skit — including turns as a naïve office intern, a gangster, [...]

  • Mindy Kaling Actors on Actors

    Why Mindy Kaling Turned to Social Media to Find the Lead of Her Netflix Series

    Constance Wu (“Hustlers”) and Mindy Kaling (“Late Night”) explained how the internet helped expand the casting pool for their projects during a conversation for “Variety Studio: Actors on Actors.” Wu began the interview: “When I did ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ and they were looking for actors, it was crazy how many people said, ‘Well, there are [...]

  • SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- "Harry Styles"

    'Saturday Night Live' Turns the Impeachment Hearings Into a Soap Opera (Watch)

    “Saturday Night Live” kicked off its Nov. 16 episode with a take on the biggest news story of the previous week (and foreseeable future): the impeachment hearings. But another big story of the week, especially in Hollywood, was how NBC’s last remaining daytime drama, “Days of our Lives,” had let its actors out of their [...]

  • Andy Cohen attends BravoCon's "Watch What

    'The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City' to Debut in 2020

    Bravo announced Saturday during its first annual BravoCon that a tenth “Real Housewives” series, “The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City,” will debut in 2020. Bravo host and “Real Housewives” executive producer Andy Cohen made the announcement during a panel titled “Ask Andy” at the NYC convention. “We’ve always tried to choose a city that [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content