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Lane crafting Midler laffer for Eye net

Skein may bow fall 2000

Bette Midler’s long-anticipated CBS sitcom is one step closer to reality.

Former “Mad About You” exec producer Jeffrey Lane has signed on to create and exec produce the skein, which has been in development at Columbia TriStar Television for more than a year (Daily Variety, March 1, 1999.) Midler and her All Girl Prods. partner Bonnie Bruckheimer are also set as exec producers.

Tentatively titled “Bette,” the half-hour laffer will feature Midler playing a well-known celeb “who looks remarkably like Bette Midler,” according to a release from Col TriStar. Show is in contention for a fall 2000 bow but could also go midseason.

Midler settled on the concept for “Bette” after reviewing series outlines from several scripters. Thesp’s All Girl Prods. has an overall deal with Col for both film and TV.

Lane served as exec producer of Col TriStar’s “Mad” for three seasons, from 1994 until 1996. His other credits include the Emmy-winning mini “The Murder of Mary Phagan” and numerous specs such as the Tony Awards and the Kennedy Center Honors.

“Bette” will be produced by D Train Prods. and All Girl Prods. in association with CBS Prods. and Col TriStar Prods.

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