Jim Carrey is reuniting with his “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” director Michel Gondry to star in a new half-hour comedy for Showtime. “Kidding,” which has been given a 10-episode order, will represent Carrey’s first series regular role in more than two decades.
“Kidding” stars Carrey as Jeff, also known as beloved children’s TV personality Mr. Pickles. Here’s the logline: “A beacon of kindness and wisdom to America’s impressionable young minds and the parents who grew up with him – [Jeff] also anchors a multimillion dollar branding empire. But when this beloved personality’s family – wife, two sons, sister and father – begins to implode, Jeff finds no fairy tale or fable or puppet will guide him through this crisis, which advances faster than his means to cope. The result: a kind man in a cruel world faces a slow leak of sanity as hilarious as it is heartbreaking.”
Gondry will direct the project and executive produce with Carrey. Dave Holstein (“Weeds”) created the show and wrote the pilot. He’ll also serve as showrunner on “Kidding,” while other executive producers include Jason Bateman (“Arrested Development”), Raffi Adlan (“The Green Hornet”), Jim Garavente and Michael Aguilar (“I’m Dying Up Here”).
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“Kidding” extends Showtime’s relationship with Carrey, who serves as executive producer and one of the inspirations behind the period series “I’m Dying Up Here.”
“No one inhabits a character like Jim Carrey, and this role – which is like watching Humpty Dumpty after the fall – is going to leave television audiences wondering how they went so long without him,” said Showtime president/CEO David Nevins, who announced the show Thursday. “With his ‘Eternal Sunshine’ partner Michel Gondry on board to direct, we are on our way to a magnetic, volcanic and emotional viewing experience.”
Carrey won two Golden Globes as a lead actor, in 1999 for “The Truman Show” and in 2000 for “Man on the Moon.” Before “Killing,” his last regular TV gig was the 1990s sketch comedy show “In Living Color,” which first help put him on the map. Gondry won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.” His other credits include “The Green Hornet,” “Be Kind Rewind,” “The Science of Sleep” and “Human Nature.”