Com­edy Cen­tral or­ders se­ries about Awk­wa­fina’s life

The Bradenton Herald (Sunday) - - Television - BY YVONNE VIL­LAR­REAL

Cap­ping off a ban­ner year that in­cluded a role in the all-fe­male heist se­quel “Ocean’s 8” and a scen­esteal­ing turn in “Crazy Rich Asians,” rap­per-co­me­di­an­ac­tress Awk­wa­fina is now slated to star in a Com­edy Cen­tral show based on her life.

The net­work an­nounced Thurs­day that it has ordered 10 episodes of the 29-year old multi-hy­phen­ate’s epony­mous scripted se­ries. The half-hour com­edy will fo­cus on her early 20s when she lived in Queens with her fa­ther and grand­mother while dream­ing of mak­ing it big. BD Wong (“Mr. Robot”) will play her fa­ther, Lori Tan Chinn (“Or­ange Is the New Black”) her grand­mother and Bowen Yang (“The Outs”) Awk­wa­fina’s more suc­cess­ful cousin.

It marks the first scripted se­ries fronted by an Asian Amer­ica on the lin­ear net­work. (“The Daily Show” cor­re­spon­dent Ronny Chieng had a dig­i­tal se­ries on the Com­edy Cen­tral app that pre­miered this sum­mer.)

Awk­wa­fina, Karey Dor­netto (“SMILF,” “Port­landia”) and Teresa Hsiao (“Fam­ily Guy,” “Amer­i­can Dad”) wrote the pilot, which is di­rected by Lu­cia Aniello (“Broad City”).

“I’ve been watch­ing Com­edy Cen­tral since I was old enough to hold a re­mote, and so many of their shows have de­fined who I am to­day,” Awk­wa­fina, who will also serve as an ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer, said in a state­ment. “I am so hon­ored to be given their plat­form to tell the story of an Asian Amer­i­can girl against the back­drop of the city I was raised.”

The se­ries or­der con­tin­ues a high-fly­ing year – beyond the mark she left on the big screen, she also ap­peared in the Net­flix movie “Dude,” and hosted “Sat­ur­day Night Live.” It was also an­nounced this week that she has two films, “The Farewell” and “Par­adise Hills,” pre­mier­ing at Sun­dance next year.

The se­ries will bring an­other strong fe­male per­spec­tive to a net­work that has skewed male de­spite break­out hits like “Broad City” and “In­side Amy Schumer.”

Sarah Babineau and

Jonas Larsen, ex­ec­u­tive vice pres­i­dents and co­heads of tal­ent and de­vel­op­ment for Com­edy Cen­tral, touted the show as “both a per­sonal look into one of com­edy’s bright­est stars and also a re­lat­able, funny pro­file of a young hus­tler’s strug­gle.”

And, they added, “We’re happy to be used as a pawn in Awk­wa­fina’s elab­o­rate, EGOT endgame.”

Com­edy Cen­tral also on Thurs­day an­nounced it had given a se­ries or­der to “Rob­bie,” a half-hour scripted se­ries star­ring stand-up co­me­dian Rory Scovel as a small-town youth league bas­ket­ball coach liv­ing in his fa­ther’s shadow. Beau Bridges will play his fa­ther. Will Fer­rell and Adam McKay are among the show’s ex­ec­u­tive pro­duc­ers.

Pre­miere dates for both se­ries have not yet been an­nounced.

THE SE­RIES WILL BRING AN­OTHER STRONG FE­MALE PER­SPEC­TIVE TO A NET­WORK THAT HAS SKEWED

MALE DE­SPITE BREAK­OUT HITS LIKE “BROAD CITY” AND “IN­SIDE AMY SCHUMER.”

JOR­DAN STRAUSS In­vi­sion

Com­edy Cen­tral has an­nounced a new se­ries that will fo­cus on the life of rap­per­ac­tress-come­di­enne Awk­wa­fina.

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