Andrew Haigh | Jonathan Groff | News | Television

Gay HBO Andrew Haigh Dramedy Starring Jonathan Groff Set to Go

Groff

A gay dramedy starring Glee's Jonathan Groff and directed by Andrew Haigh (Weekend) has been given the go-ahead by HBO, according to the Hollywood Reporter:

The eight-episode dramedy hails from Andrew Haigh, who directed the pilot that is based on Michael Lannan's feature script Lorimer. Haigh will executive produce alongside Bored to Death's Sarah Condon and Brothers and Sisters' David Marshall Grant, with Lannan receiving a co-EP credit.

The untitled entry will revolves around the three friends in San Francisco who explore the fun and sometimes overwhelming options available to a new generation of gay men. Groff stars alongside Frankie J. Alvarez and Murray Bartlett. Production will begin in the fall in San Francisco for a 2014 premiere.

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  1. Happppppy Happpppy Birthday to Andrew W. Towle :: May 15 :: A SPECIAL DAY! :: Thank you Andy for all that you do for the community.
    Big hug!

    Posted by: Chip Arndt | May 15, 2013 8:22:21 AM


  2. While I thoroughly enjoyed Weekend with its portrayal of average-man gays, I simply cannot stomach Jonathan Groff's dimensionless acting.

    Posted by: Bollux | May 15, 2013 8:52:07 AM


  3. Wow, gay men in San Francisco? Sounds groundbreaking. Hopefully given that Haigh didn't cater to stereotypes in Weekend, he won't here, but I'm not overly enthusiastic.

    Posted by: Larry | May 15, 2013 9:06:51 AM


  4. Sounds like another tired stereotypical depiction of gay dudes. Yawn.....

    Posted by: Kyle | May 15, 2013 9:37:30 AM


  5. I can’t be the only one who’s noticed that since Queer as Folk ended it’s six-season run in 2005 there hasn’t been another show, with the exception of the short lived Noah’s Arc on Logo, that has put the lives of gay men at the center of the story. Sure, there have been an influx of gay characters on shows ranging from Scandal to Southland to Glee, but a show specifically about gay men, and the lives they lead? Hasn’t happened.

    When the American adaptation of the British series Queer as Folk debuted on Showtime in the winter of 2000, it was groundbreaking in the truest sense of the word. Never hailed as a beacon of great drama, even by its most staunch supporters, it initially gained notoriety for its frank depiction of gay sex. And the sex was frank, often used to shock and, as the narrative deepened over the years, to provide insight into the characters and their relationships. But, as Caryn James wrote in The New York Times before the show premiered, “It’s not the sex but the gay point of view that makes Queer as Folk so radical. The series is like nothing else on television because never before has a mainstream American series assumed the perspective of gay characters, making no concessions to straight viewers.”

    Unlike recent shows like The New Normal or Smash, or even Glee, where gay characters are central in what is still an essentially heterosexual world, there was no straight character in Queer as Folk to provide non-gay audiences an entree into this exotic existence. Brian, Justin, Michael, Ted, Emmitt, Lindsay and Melanie were all very gay, and as an audience you either got on board, or you didn’t watch. (Debbie, Michael’s mother and the only heterosexual regular character on the show, might as well have been gay considering her sensibilities.) Aside from the previously mentioned Noah’s Arc and Showtime’s lesbian themed The L Word, no other show has followed suit.

    Lest it seem I am declaring Queer as Folk the best dramatic series of all time, it is important to recognize the show had its major deficiencies — the acting, writing and direction were all wildly inconsistent, and at times downright bad, through the years. It also did a terrible job of depicting gay men of color. But it also had its moving, beautiful and shocking moments, and as the only show in its genre, it still deserves major, major props.

    Which brings me back to HBO’s new series. Of course, I know nothing about this show other than its description and artistic team, but I’m feeling cautiously optimistic. Haigh’s film Weekend, which depicts 48 hours in the lives of two men as they talk, have sex, get to know each other and say goodbye each other, was a total triumph — along with Ira Sachs’ Keep the Lights On, its my favorite gay film of the last decade. Groff, having gotten his start on Broadway in Spring Awakening, is an out gay actor, representing a new breed of performer viewed as a sex symbol both in spite of and because of his sexuality. And HBO, of course, has never shied away from honest, sometimes ugly depictions of real life.

    And though I’m crossing my fingers for the new show’s creative and commercial success, I’m just happy it’s happening. It’s been almost 13 years since Queer as Folk debuted. Gay men have lives worth exploring in a medium that has proven itself capable of doing so. Let’s see what happens.

    Posted by: All In Spare Time | May 15, 2013 11:14:35 AM


  6. So, I'm guessing one will be Carrie (probably Groff), one will be Miranda, and one will be Charlotte. Samantha's counterpart will be a wise old drag queen, mark my words.

    Posted by: Profe Sancho Panza | May 15, 2013 11:39:40 AM


  7. I love how some people will jump at the chance of picking a show apart, naysaying, doubting and disparaging it long before it's even been filmed. I look forward to seeing the finished project. Go Jonathan Groff Quinto!

    Posted by: Gary A/House Music Pusher | May 15, 2013 12:12:27 PM


  8. happy birthday Andy, 19 again? ;-)
    I'm so happy for Jonathan! it was about time for this dreamboat! give some to Zach tonight, in celebration Jon! lol

    Posted by: iban4yesu | May 15, 2013 12:58:24 PM


  9. Not optimistic, based on the participants/creators.

    "Weekend" was full of profanity and emptiness. "Brothers and Sisters" was full of Democratic Party talking points. And Sarah Condon is a woman--and women cannot ever really understand male sexuality or male-male relationship dynamics, no matter how hard they try--it is just outside their realm of experience. Glee? Full of stereotypes.

    And the series is set in San Francisco. Please.

    I will give it a chance, as I do all new series, but we need new voices and some really groundbreaking characters material--ideally those that shatter stereotypes rather than reinforce them--and I see nothing here that suggests that we will get that in this case.

    Posted by: Rick | May 15, 2013 2:23:55 PM


  10. I propose a show based on myself - a completely closeted fifty-something whose only sexual outlets are at gloryholes at gas stations, who spends his days online anonymously spewing hatred against effeminate gay males who are Out and have actual social, romantic and sexual lives.

    It would make for riveting television.

    Posted by: Rick | May 15, 2013 2:32:50 PM


  11. Oh, I just realized that closeted men who spew anti-effeminacy hatred anonymously online is, itself, a stereotype. Damnit. It really sucks to be me.

    Posted by: Rick | May 15, 2013 2:35:36 PM


  12. Maybe my show will get a spin-off where I go to drag bars around America, taunt the performers for not being masculine enough, and get my @$$ kicked like the Internet Tough Guy I really am.

    Posted by: Rick | May 15, 2013 2:44:12 PM


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