AMC Networks is fast-track developing a potential new series starring Bob Odenkirk for 2023 called Straight Man, with partners Sony Pictures’ Television TriStar TV and Gran Via. Aaron Zelman and Paul Lieberstein, who are adapting the project from the novel of the same name by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Russo, would serve as co-showrunners. Straight Man would be Odenkirk’s third series on AMC, following Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul. Zelman, Lieberstein, Odenkirk, Peter Farrelly, who is on board to direct, Richard Russo, Naomi Odenkirk and Marc Provissiero are executive producers.
Straight Man is a mid-life crisis tale set at Railton College, told in the first person by William Henry Devereaux, Jr. (Odenkirk), the unlikely chairman of the English department in a badly underfunded college in the Pennsylvania rust belt.
“Bob Odenkirk is just as good as it gets. We feel so fortunate to be developing a new show that would keep him at AMC after Better Call Saul and Breaking Bad, two iconic series that have been beloved by millions of fans and helped define AMC and its reputation for unforgettable characters and high-quality storytelling for adults,” said Dan McDermott, president of entertainment and AMC Studios for AMC Networks. “We’re also thrilled to be working again with our partners at Sony Pictures Television and Mark Johnson’s Gran Via to explore this compelling material.”
Said Bob Odenkirk: “I loved Paul and Aaron’s take on Richard’s excellent, entertaining novel. Once again a project with AMC with a focus on character depth and sensitivity. This milieu (academia) seems very pertinent to the conversations we’re all having. I am drawn to the tone of humanity and humor in the novel and I look forward to playing this role – something lighter than my recent projects but still closely observed and smart.”
AMC Networks has an expanding array of new series coming to AMC and AMC+ in 2023, including a new series set in the world of Orphan Black – Orphan Black: Echoes, The Driver, starring Giancarlo Esposito, two spinoff series ineThe Walking Dead Universe, Demascus and Invitation to a Bonfire. This year, AMC+ and AMC viewers have access to a remarkable lineup of original programming, including final seasons of the popular and critically acclaimed series The Walking Dead, Killing Eve and Better Call Saul, returning originals like Kevin Can F**K Himself, Fear the Walking Dead and Gangs of London and new series including the gritty courtroom drama 61st Street, Dark Winds, Tales of the Walking Dead, Moonhaven, Pantheon, That Dirty Black Bag and the first two series in a new Anne Rice universe, Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire and Anne Rice’s Mayfair Witches.