Larry Wilmore bid farewell to The Nightly Show and Comedy Central back in August, ending a run that started as a Daily Show correspondent before earning a chance to replace Stephen Colbert as he jetted over to network television. Some folks probably didn’t watch the show much before the cancellation, which is one of the sad parts about it being canceled. It wasn’t always the best, but there was a lot of good there after watching on a pretty regular basis.
Luckily, Wilmore’s next step is a return to the realm of scripted television — something he’s familiar with and with a few big shows under his belt. He just signed a deal with ABC according to The Hollywood Reporter, developing his own projects and working behind the scenes with ABC Studios to cultivate new talent:
The deal brings Wilmore back to ABC Studios, where he executive produces the studio’s ABC hit Black-ish. Wilmore originally was set to serve as showrunner on Black-ish, which he developed alongside creator Kenya Barris. He exited the ABC family comedy to host Comedy Central’s The Nightly Show. In addition to Black-ish, Wilmore also co-created and exec produces HBO’s Issa Rae critical darling Insecure, which was recently renewed for a second season at the premium cable network.
“I’m excited beyond words to be back at ABC and look forward to this creative partnership. Disney took a chance on me as a young writer years ago and so I’m thrilled to return to the Mouse House. I hope my room still looks the same,” Wilmore said Monday in a statement.
In addition to Black-ish and Insecure, Wilmore’s credits include Fox comedies The Bernie Mac Show and The P.J.’s.
Black-ish combines the sensibilities from Good Times, with more laughs and a dash of Fred Sanford thrown in for good measure thanks to Laurence Fishburne. It’d be easy to compare it to The Cosby Show, bit there’s a bit more bite to it which is definitely a benefit. Either that or I just have too much fondness for those old 70s sitcoms.
Wilmore talked about his desires to return to scripted television with The Hollywood Reporter following The Nightly Show‘s ending at Comedy Central:
“When I talk about scripted, that’s what I mean, half-hour and getting back into that world. I really love storytelling. It’s really something that I miss. As much as I love doing this, I really love storytelling as well. I’ll probably be doing something like that more immediately,” he said. “I’d love to set up shop somewhere and develop projects — film, TV, digital — would be a fun thing to do. And I love mentoring people, too, and working with Kenya Barris [on Black-ish] and then being able to go somewhere else again.”
Definitely something to look forward to at ABC. They seem to be stuck in non-traditional adorable family mode at the moment, but the success is there. Considering Wilmore’s list of credits, it’ll be interesting to see what else comes through ABC Studios in the near future.