Touchstone milestone: Laffer ‘Daddio’ to NBC

Family-oriented skeins on slate

Touchstone Television’s family laffer “Daddio” is headed to NBC for a spring tryout.

The Peacock has ordered six episodes of the skein from former “Ellen” and “Grace Under Fire” scribes Matt Berry and Rick Swartzlander. Show is expected to bow in March or April, making it the first Touchstone product to land on a network other than ABC since the studio was folded into the ABC Entertainment Television Group last summer.

By putting “Daddio” on the fast track for a spring launch, NBC hopes to get a head start on what could be a slew of family-oriented laffers bowing next fall on the major webs. Peacock execs have called the development of a family comedy hit a major priority for the web.

“Daddio” revolves around a married father who’s chosen to stay home and care for his kids while his wife works outside the home. Former “Commish” star Michael Chiklis has been cast as the dad, while Anita Barone (“Life and Stuff”) will play the mom.

Other cast members include Suzy Nakamura (“The West Wing”), Amy Wilson and comic Kevin Crowley.

NBC execs seem to be particularly high on “Daddio.” When the net picked up a pilot of the show late last year, NBC Entertainment topper Garth Ancier said the program had “the tone of ‘Home Improvement.’ ”

When it does hit the air, “Daddio” will be closely watched by industry insiders, for several reasons.

First, NBC hasn’t had a successful family comedy for years, and recent attempts to launch one have fallen flat. If “Daddio” can find an audience on NBC, its success will open the door to many more family-friendly laffers.

In addition, insiders will be looking to see how the relationship between NBC and Touchstone/ABC execs works out. Eyebrows were raised in some quarters earlier this month when ABC Entertainment Television Group co-chair Stu Bloomberg attended an early run-through of “Daddio.”

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