Steve Carell broke a million hearts recently when he shot down the possibility of a reunion of The Office, citing the current political and social climate as the reason why he thought the beloved NBC sitcom just wouldn’t work today. But those of you who were hoping to see Carell make his return to the small screen have reason to rejoice. On Tuesday The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that he’d be joining Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon in Apple’s upcoming morning-show drama.
The still-untitled show, which is loosely based on Brian Stelter’s book Top of the Morning: Inside the Cutthroat World of Morning TV, will chronicle the lives of the people who make morning television. According to Deadline, Carell will play Mitch Kessler, a morning-show anchor who is “struggling to maintain relevance in the ever-changing media landscape.” The show was written by Kerry Ehrin (Bates Motel) and directed by Mimi Leder (The Leftovers), and is expected to begin production next week.
That’s good news for anyone who’s been keeping track of Apple’s aggressive plunge into original scripted television. It’s been a year since Apple first announced the series, which joined the tech giant’s growing list of shows in development, as it gets set to challenge Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon for streaming supremacy. But up until now, none has actually gone into production.
If Apple does want to create a splash with its first show, it makes sense that this is the one it’s going with. Carell, Aniston, and Witherspoon all have movie star pedigrees, something Witherspoon has proved translates well to the small screen, after the huge success of Big Little Lies. And with all the drama inherent in the morning-show landscape (recent controversies surrounding Matt Lauer and Megyn Kelly come to mind), the showrunners will have a wealth of material to pull from. Set your DVRs.