Steve Coogan Boards Showtime’s Happyish

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Although it had originally been planned to star the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, Showtime’s comedy pilot “Happyish” has now set Philomena star Steve Coogan as its lead. The Oscar and Golden Globe nominee film a half-hour pilot this December in New York. The announcement was made today by David Nevins, President, Showtime Networks Inc.

“Happyish” is a comedic, soul-searching examination of our pursuit of happiness, a pursuit that might just be the very thing causing our unhappiness in the first place.

Coogan will star in the lead role of Thom Payne, a 44 year-old man whose world is thrown into disarray when his 25-year-old “wunderkind” boss arrives, saying things like “digital,” “social” and “viral.” Is he in need of a “rebranding,” as his mentor insists, or does he just have a “low joy ceiling,” as his corporate headhunter suggests? Maybe pursuing happiness is a fool’s errand? Maybe, after 44 years on this ludicrous planet, settling for happyish is the best one can expect.

“Steve’s range is astounding – he is a comedy legend, a gifted satirist, and he possesses the unique combination of talents this role demands,” said Auslander.

“Happyish” was created, written and executive produced by critically-acclaimed author and regular “This American Life” contributor Shalom Auslander. Emmy Award nominee Ken Kwapis (He’s Just Not That Into You, A Walk in the Woods) will executive produce and direct the pilot. Kwapis’ producing partner Alexandra Beattie will co-executive produce, under their In Cahoots banner.

(Photo Credit: WENN.com)