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'SNL' Alums Chris Parnell & Horatio Sans Join New Jon Heder Sitcom

March 15th, 2010 12:22pm EDT

Jon Heder-LRS-001186.jpgComedy Central has cast Chris Parnell and Horatio Sanz in the untitled sitcom starring Jon Heder from Gary Sanchez Productions and Debmar-Mercury, it was announced today by Gary Sanchez Productions, Comedy Central and Debmar-Mercury.

Produced by Gary Sanchez Productions, the production company led by Will Ferrell, Adam McKay and Chris Henchy, and distributed by Debmar-Mercury, the untitled, multi-camera sitcom for Comedy Central stars Heder ("Napoleon Dynamite," "Blades of Glory") as a young man who won't let anything get in the way of his big dreams, even if it means losing his job and having to move back in with his parents and sleep on their couch. Heder enlists the help of his friends, an ex-convict, played by Sanz ("Saturday Night Live"), and a burned-out high-school teacher, played by Parnell ("30 Rock"), in planning a myriad of well-intentioned schemes to save their hometown, Big Lake. Invariably these plans don't come to fruition and the gang is forced to go back to the drawing board.

Said McKay, "Anyone in the comedy world knows that Horatio Sanz and Chris Parnell are two of the funniest guys around. So we're absolutely giddy that we got them for this show."

Executive produced by Ferrell, McKay and Henchy and written by Emmy Award-winner Lew Morton ("Undeclared", "Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story"), the series is set to commence production on March 31 in New York City with a premiere scheduled for 3Q 2010.

Chris Parnell is best known for his roles on "Saturday Night Live," having made memorable contributions as a regular cast member off and on from 1998-2006 and in several guest appearances during the 2008 presidential campaign. Currently, Parnell appears regularly as "Dr. Leo Spaceman" on NBC's "30 Rock" and he also plays the Narrator and several other roles on the Scholastic/PBS animated series, "WordGirl." In film, he most recently appeared in the Sony feature, "Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story" and recently shot "Paper Man," starring Jeff Daniels and Lisa Kudrow. His other film work includes "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy," "Laborpains," "The Ladies Man" and "Down with Love."

Horatio Sanz honed his craft in his hometown of Chicago as a founding member of the Upright Citizens Brigade and as a company member of "Second City." When he joined the cast of "Saturday Night Live" in its 24th season, he became their first Latino cast member. On the show, Sanz made his mark with original characters ranging from pothead Gobi in "Jarret's Room," to A/V teacher Mr. Banglian on "Wake Up, Wakefield" and "Uncle Rick" to Amy Poehler's "Kaitlin." Sanz recently appeared in ABC's "In The Motherhood" and in a notable guest appearance on NBC's "30 Rock." This past holiday season, Sanz was honored when Julian Casablancas (The Strokes) released a cover of "I Wish it Was Christmas Today," the song Sanz and Jimmy Fallon co-wrote and performed annually on "SNL." His film credits include "Step Brothers" and "Year One."

Modeled after previous successful groundbreaking Tyler Perry sitcom ventures from Debmar-Mercury co-presidents Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein, Comedy Central has initially ordered 10 episodes of the Heder sitcom and will then have the option to order an additional 90 episodes upon a successful first season run. Debmar-Mercury would retain the rights to take the series into syndication after its run on Comedy Central. Prior to this deal, Debmar-Mercury had partnered with Comedy Central in 2003 to distribute the broadcast syndication rights to the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning series "South Park."

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Photo Credits: Chris Hatcher / Photorazzi