Stephen Merchant Goes It Alone
Working on a new sitcom for HBO.
With Ricky Gervais off doing his solo Derek project for Channel Four, Stephen Merchant is prepping his own series for HBO, Hello Ladies.
According to Hollywood trade website, Deadline, which broke the news, Merchant stars as a gawky man "half as charming as he thinks he is — and twice as desperate [and] obsessed with infiltrating the glamorous world of beautiful people. Unfortunately the beautiful people won't let him in."
Merchant has co-written the script (which is loosely based on the premise of his 2011 live stand-up tour Hello Ladies) with Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, both of whom worked on the American version of The Office and co-wrote the movie Bad Teacher.
Given the mixed critical response to Gervais's Derek pilot, will Hello Ladies show Merchant as the less crowing talent behind The Office and Extras? Watch this space.
Click here for a clip from Merchant's Hello Ladies DVD: