Roseanne Barr’s new multi-camera sitcom “Downwardly Mobile” has been purchased by NBC with a script commitment plus penalty. Barr co-created the project, about a working class family and friends living in a mobile home community, with boyfriend John Argent and Eric Gilliland, who also worked on “Roseanne” for four years before departing in its eighth season. Barr will star in the series and Gilliland will serve as showrunner.
The project came out of a script deal Barr made back in August with 20th Century Fox TV, which then shopped the resulting idea to networks. If picked up to series, this would be Barr’s first scripted TV project since “Roseanne” ended in 1997 after running for nine seasons on ABC. Her Lifetime reality series “Roseanne’s Nuts” was cancelled late last month after just one season.
Barr has remained a controversial figure since her early years on “Roseanne”, when she famously sparred with both ABC and the show’s producers. It will be interesting to see if she can still connect with viewers after all these years, particularly those on the right side of the political spectrum who may feel alienated by her outspoken left-wing viewpoints.