Jon Heder should send a big bouquet of whatever to the Funny or Die folks for getting him front-and-center for a new Comedy Central sitcom. The network announced a deal to air 10 episodes of an untitled sitcom starring Heder and written and produced by Gary Sanchez Productions — aka Will Ferrell, Chris Henchy and Adam McKay, aka Funny or Die. These guys look to be expanding their comedy branding, as they already have a plan to air 10 half-hours of comedy programming with HBO. For this project, they're teaming up with Debmar-Murray, the company that has helped redefine sitcom distribution deals with their work on Tyler Perry's TBS sitcoms (this deal includes a similar option for Comedy Central to order an additional 90 episodes after the first season, and the rights for Debmar-Murray to later syndicate the show). Oh, right. The show? It'll star Heder as an unemployed IT guy who returns to his small hometown and moves back in with his folks and younger brother. Heder's big break came in 2004's Napoleon Dynamite, of course, though his highest-profile project since then was 2007's Blades of Glory, in which he co-starred with Ferrell. Here's the money quote from McKay on helming Heder's new sitcom:
"We've always been fans of Jon's," McKay comments. "This deal gives us a chance to take some big creative swings without the risk of testing and focus grouping the show to death."