Jason Sudeikis and Jean Smart to Star in ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ Table Read for The Ed Asner Family Center (EXCLUSIVE)

Jason Sudeikis Jean Smart
Michael Buckner/PMC

Jason Sudeikis will star in a table read of “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

The “Ted Lasso” Emmy winner will play George Bailey in the holiday classic and his real-life uncle, George Wendt, will appear as Uncle Billy. The cast also includes Jean Smart, Rosario Dawson, Mark Hamill, Martin Sheen, Mandy Patinkin, Lou Diamond Phillips, Phil Lamarr, Ben Mankiewicz, Ron Funches and Ed Harris.

Hosted by Tom Bergeron, the second annual virtual evening will take place Dec. 5 and pay tribute to the late Ed Asner and benefit The Ed Asner Family Center (TEAFC), which promotes mental health and enrichment programs for children with special needs and their families. It’s produced in partnership with Turner Classic Movies and sponsored by MeTV.


“My father’s passing has left an indescribable hole in my heart. For our annual fundraising gala this year, I want to honor my father’s legacy as both a legendary actor and a staunch advocate for people of all abilities,” Matt Asner, son of Ed Asner & co-founder of The Ed Asner Family Center, said in statement Tuesday morning. “I would like to thank Turner Classic Movies for partnering to support our effort to raise much needed funds for special needs families and I am eternally grateful for the support shown by our amazing cast. I would also like to thank MeTV for their generous sponsorship of this event.”

In addition to the Ed Asner tribute, the night will honor Warner Bros. president of unscripted and alternative television Mike Darnell and his family. The cast will include Mike’s daughter and TEAFC social director, Chelsea Darnell, autistic actors Spencer Harte and Domonique Brown (“Atypical”) and neurodivergent TEAFC members Ryan Booth and Lucas Salusky. Victor Nelli (“Superstore,” “Brooklyn Nine Nine”) returns as director.

Tickets are available at teafc.org.