Scribe Joel Wyman is going from “Keen Eddie” to “Repo Cohen.”
After spirited bidding from at least two other networks, Wyman and his Paramount-based Frequency Films have sold “Cohen” to NBC for fall 2004. Peacock has made a premium script commitment to the project, with a sizable penalty attached if it’s not picked up to pilot.
Warren Littlefield, who’s also based at Par and worked with Wyman on “Eddie,” is attached to serve as exec producer on the new skein.
“Repo” reps the first project to emerge from Wyman’s recently inked overall deal with Par (Daily Variety, May 30).
Like “Keen Eddie,” Wyman’s newest creation is centered around a flawed character on a journey of self-discovery — here, a Detroit policeman who moves to Los Angeles and ends up working as a repo man.
“He comes to L.A. to reinvent himself,” Wyman said. “It’s a character piece, but there’s a new dramatic story (in each episode). The repossessions are an entry into people’s lives, and they also allow Cohen to re-evaluate himself through what he learns about these people.”
As with “Keen Eddie” and his feature “The Mexican,” Wyman said “Repo Cohen” will be marked by “a lot of fun and humor,” along with a cast of colorful characters surrounding Cohen.
“I like to write flawed characters who need work, who ask questions in life and are trying to figure things out,” Wyman said.
No complaints for Fox
While “Keen Eddie” is almost certainly dead on Fox, Wyman said he has no complaints about the experience.
“Fox was nothing but supportive,” he said. “And to me, it’s a success because there are very few times that everything that’s in your head ends up on the screen.”
As for bringing in Littlefield, CAA-repped Wyman said the ex-NBC topper is “a fighter” who knows how to manage the various non-writing responsibilities involved in getting a show on the air.
“We also share the same work ethic, which is we never sleep,” Wyman said. “And he does a lot of things, because of his experience, that I don’t do.”
Project will also reunite Littlefield with incoming NBC programming chief Kevin Reilly, who worked at the Peacock at the same time as Littlefield.