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Fred Willard, Michael McKean & Ed Begley Jr. Climb Christopher Guest’s ‘Family Tree’

Fred Willard, Michael McKean & Ed Begley Jr. Climb Christopher Guest's 'Family Tree'

Christopher Guest is finally coming back with his first project since 2006’s “For Your Consideration.” And intriguingly, it’s another stab at the small screen (in 2007 he helmed the pilot of the U.S. version of Armando Ianucci‘s “The Thick Of It,” which didn’t go anywhere) but one that is bringing with it a host of familiar faces.

Chris O’Dowd toplines HBO‘s “Family Tree,” which they ordered to series last month, and as we surmised, Guest’s regular players are being brought in to join the fun. While cowardly networks PBS and ABC pulled their planned projects with Willard following his porn theater “scandal” (whatever), the actor has landed on his feet the best way possible, arriving with Michael McKean and Ed Begley Jr. for the upcoming show. All three go back many years with Guest, all the way to “This Is Spinal Tap!” though fun fact: Begley Jr. and Guest both once appeared together on an episode “St. Elsewhere” in 1982.

The story will center on 30-year-old Tom Chadwick, who inherits a mysterious box that belonged to his great aunt, and decides to learn more about his roots. Begley will play Tom’s Uncle Andy, Willard will be Andy’s neighbor, McKean will play Tom’s father, Keith, while other Guest regular Don Lake rounds things out as Tom’s cousin.

8 episodes are in production for the show that will air simultaneously on both sides of the Atlantic. Frankly, this sounds like it’s going to be great, and another solid addition to HBO’s comedy lineup. [THR]

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