It’s amazing how the premise for a pleasingly quirky movie can start to seem a lot less appealing when thought of in terms of a TV series (and vice versa). “About a Boy” the Nick Hornby book turned 2002 Hugh Grant movie about a London playboy who’s spent his entire life living off the royalties of his father’s novelty Christmas song and the strange kid he befriends while trying to meet women at a single-parents group? Funny and crowd-pleasing. “About a Boy” the sitcom about a man-child and the actual child who moves in next door hanging out? Sounds vaguely like “Two and a Half Men.”
Deadline reports that “About a Boy” is nevertheless heading to the small screen, where it’s being developed as a potential single-camera comedy series at NBC. This is actually the second time the story’s been attempted as a TV adaptation — in 2003, Fox looked into a pilot presentation of an adaptation starting Patrick Dempsey, written by Matthew Carlson and directed by Ken Kwapis.
On the promising side in this new attempt is the fact that it’s being written and executive produced by Jason Katims, who’s worked on both the great “Friday Night Lights” and the uneven but prone to moments of excellence “Parenthood.” Michelle Lee will serve as producer. Katims focused mainly on comedy as a playwright and has reportedly been looking for a half-hour show in the genre — Deadline says that “he liked About A Boy for his first half-hour comedy effort as it’s in line with the tone of his work, and he loves exploring surrogate father-son relationships on his shows.” Outside of television, Katims wrote 1996’s “The Pallbearer” with director Matt Reeves (“Let Me In,” “Cloverfield”).