A generation ago, Billy Hardwick was a professional bowler, ABC was the TV network that aired bowling to a national viewing audience, and AMF were the three big letters in bowling.
In 2014, it’s Chris Hardwick’s turn down the alley and AMC is the place to see it.
Yes, Chris Hardwick, son of the late professional bowler Billy Hardwick and well-known TV personality on AMC thanks to Talking Dead and Talking Bad, will bring his Nerdist webseries, All-Star Celebrity Bowling, to the cable channel.
AMC announced an order of eight half-hour episodes today. It also ordered two other slightly less humorous offerings to series, Visionaries, and The Untitled Billy Corgan Wrestling Project.
“We are thrilled to continue our incredible partnership with Chris Hardwick, host of our most successful unscripted series, Talking Dead,” said Eliot Goldberg, AMC’s senior vice president of unscripted programming.
AMC had been in development with Hardwick on the project for more than a year. When it landed on AMC’s development slate in early 2013, Hardwick said then: “It has always been one of our main goals with Nerdist to grow content in the digital garden of the Internet which we could then evolve onto other platforms.”
All-Star Celebrity Bowling is an adaptation of Hardwick’s webseries that pitted his Nerdist team against a different cast of celebrities each week, with The Sklar Brothers (twins Randy and Jason Sklar) hosting. The pilot features Jon Hamm and the cast of AMC’s Mad Men. Each match is played for charity.
This is how that looked originally as a webisode in 2012:
All-Star Celebrity Bowling is produced by High Noon Entertainment and Nerdist Industries. Executive Producers: Chris Hardwick, with Jim Berger and Patrick Jager from High Noon.
Here’s the full webseries playlist from the Nerdist YouTube channel:
Hardwick still maintains a busy on-air schedule that includes hosting the comedy fake game show, @midnight, on Comedy Central Mondays-Thursdays, as well as his Nerdist podcast.