Somebody Call Orson: Robin Williams Eyes TV Comeback

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By Christopher Zara | September 1, 2012 11:10 AM EST

It's been three decades since Robin Williams starred in a TV series, but rumor has it he may soon return to the medium that made him famous.

The hyperactive comic actor is in talks to team up with the master showrunner David E. Kelley for a single-camera comedy set in the advertising industry, Entertainment Weekly reported.

Kelley, the Emmy Award-winning creator of such shows as "Chicago Hope," "The Practice," "Ally McBeal," "Boston Legal," and others, will write and produce the half-hour series, which will most likely air on the eponymous network of the CBS Corp. (NYSE: CBS). The 20th Century Fox Television unit of the News Corp. (Nasdaq: NWS) will also produce.  

The series, reportedly called "The Crazy Ones," will star Williams as an advertising executive who works with his daughter. Williams' real-life daughter, Zelda Williams, is also an actress, although there is no word on whether she will play his on-screen daughter. The 23-year-old touched off a debate about Hollywood nepotism this year when she posted an open letter on her blog, blasting those who have accused her of landing roles because she is the daughter of a celebrity.

The elder Williams, now 61, has not appeared regularly on television since the ABC broadcast-network comedy "Mork & Mindy," in which he starred as a manic but well-intentioned alien sent to study Earth culture and customs. Appearing on ABC before its acquisition by the Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS), the series was canceled in 1982, freeing Williams to pursue a movie career. (His debut starring role was in Robert Altman's "Popeye," which was released while the series was on the air.) The actor went on to enjoy huge critical and commercial success in the 1980s and '90s, but many of his more recent efforts have been flops. "Old Dogs," the 2009 comedy in which Williams starred with John Travolta, currently has a 5 percent rating on the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.  

Williams' new series will be executive produced by Bill D'Elia, who also produced Kelley's "Harry's Law" and "Ally McBeal," among other shows.

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