Jon Stewart producing new Comedy Central show
By Andrew Wallenstein
Wed Oct 3, 1:38 AM ET Comedy Central
is set to announce Wednesday the pickup of a second series from "The Daily Show" host Jon Stewart
's production company.
The sketch-variety show "Important Things With Demetri Martin
" is slated for the second half of 2008; anywhere from six to 10 episodes will be executive produced by Stewart and Martin, who has been a featured contributor on "Daily Show."
"Martin" is the second series Comedy Central has ordered from Stewart's Busboy Prods. since they struck a first-look deal in 2005. "The Colbert Report" was their first collaboration.
Martin has worked with Comedy Central in various other capacities, including his first comedy album, "These Are Jokes"; a stand-up tour; and a primetime special, "Demetri Martin, Person," which aired in January.
In his show, Martin will alternate between taped sketches and stand-up performances in front of a studio audience. The network has struck gold with this format before, including with "Chappelle's Show" and "Mind of Mencia," which received a fourth-season order Tuesday.
But Lauren Corrao
, executive vp original programming and development at Comedy Central, noted that Martin's style of humor is nothing like the sketch shows the network has previously tried. The pilot puts Martin's sly, thoughtful manner to use by having all the segments riff on "the important things" about ... chairs. Future episodes will give the same treatment to everything from apples to "what happens after we die," she said.
Stewart has taken an active role in shepherding the "Martin" pilot, said Corrao.
"When we were in the throes of postproduction, Jon went into the office and editing room and worked with Demetri on the final cuts," she said. "He's been very involved."