Lamorne Morris to Star in Hulu Comedy Pilot ‘Woke’ as Cartoonist Keith Knight

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Lamorne Morris will star as cartoonist Keith Knight in a comedy pilot for Hulu titled “Woke,” an insider with knowledge of the project told TheWrap.

The project is a mix of live-action and animation, inspired by the life and art of Knight. The series follows Keef (Morris), an African-American cartoonist living in San Francisco, who is on the cusp of mainstream success when an unexpected incident changes everything.

Knight co-wrote the project with “Barbershop” scribe Marshall Todd, with both set to serve as executive producers. Will Gluck and Richie Schwartz will executive produce via Olive Bridge Entertainment along with Eric Christian Olsen and Katie Schumaecker for Cloud Nine Productions. Sony Pictures TV will produce.

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Knight’s comic strip works includes autobiographical strips like “The K Chronicles,” “The Knight Life,” and “(th)ink.” His cartoons have appeared in several national publications and tackle social, racial and class issues as well as poking fun at the minutiae of urban living.

Hulu declined to comment.

Morris starred for 7 seasons on Fox’s “New Girl,” and also recently starred in the film “Game Night.” He is set to appear in the Nat Geo series “Valley of the Boom.”

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‘New Girl’ Creator Liz Meriwether Extends 20th Century Fox TV Overall Deal

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Liz Meriwether is sticking with Fox. The “New Girl” creator has extended her overall deal with 20th Century Fox TV, amid Disney’s pending purchase of the studio.

“Liz is the greatest, and we all hope she will stay at this studio forever,” Joannie Davis, 20th Century Fox, President Creative Affairs, said. “She’s a spectacular talent and an incredibly special person.”

“20th gave me my first job before I even owned Final Draft, and they’ve been an incredibly supportive home for me as an artist for almost a decade,” Meriwether said. “I’m thankful I get to continue making television with them — I wouldn’t want to be on conference calls with anyone else.”

Also Read: ‘New Girl’ Creator Liz Meriwether Tells Us Where the Idea for Winston’s ‘Greatest Prank’ Came From

Meriwether’s Zooey Deschanel-led sitcom wrapped this spring after a seven-season run on Fox and her Lake Bell-led pilot “Bless This Mess” was recently ordered for off-cycle consideration at the network. Meriwether is also executive producing the upcoming comedy “Single Parents” for ABC, with creator JJ Philbin and Katherine Pope. The single-cam series stars Taran Killam, Leighton Meester and Brad Garrett.

The producer joins a list of Fox showrunners who have chosen to extend their deals with the studio amid the upcoming Fox-Disney merger, including Lee Daniels (“Empire,” “Star”), Tim Minear (“9-1-1”) and Kurt Sutter (“Mayans MC”), among others.

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Prince’s 7 Best Movie and TV Performances: From ‘Purple Rain’ to ‘New Girl’ (Photos)

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From his film debut in “Purple Rain” to his last appearance on “Saturday Night Live,” Prince made rare — but unforgettable — appearances on the big and small screens.
In his film debut, Prince played a semi-autobiogr…

11 Craziest Shockers and Deaths on This Season’s TV Finales (Photos)

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It’s called “Peak TV” for a reason. And now that season finales are airing, a crescendo of unpredictable story beats are keeping fans enthralled and, in some instances, filled with rage. TheWrap has rounded up some of the best, most s…

‘New Girl’ Series Finale: That Final Nick-Schmidt Bromance Flashback Was Totally Improvised

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Spoiler alert: Please do not read ahead unless you’ve seen the series finale of “New Girl”)

The love story at the center of Fox’s “New Girl” was a focal point of the series finale on Tuesday. We’re talking, of course, about the bromance between Nick (Jake Johnson) and Schmidt (Max Greenfield).

Oh, come on, you always knew Nick and Jess (Zooey Deschanel) were going to get married. But did you ever imagine Nick would finally admit he truly loves his BFF? Yes, in the last few moments of the episode Nick says those three little words Schmidt has been waiting for so long to hear.

And if Johnson and Greenfield had had it there way, you probably would have seen more of a two-sided relationship long before the finale.

Also Read: ‘New Girl’ Creator Liz Meriwether Tells Us Where the Idea for Winston’s ‘Greatest Prank’ Came From

“I love all the flashback stuff,” Johnson told TheWrap, while being interviewed along with stars Greenfield and Hannah Simone at an advanced screening of the final two episodes of the Liz Meriwether sitcom. “[Greenfield] in the fat suit was always really funny. Lamorne with those rows was always funny — those cornrows. It was just really fun to do those. And the one that I saw in this one [the finale] — now I’m trying to brag, but I have seen the last two episodes — we do a bit on the couch –,” Johnson said, before being cut off by Simone, who plays Schmidt’s wife Cece.

“I have not seen that like intense sexual chemistry that happens there,” Simone said, laughing.

“Yeah, well, cause it’s been cut out Hannah! For six years!” Johnson said. “Every scene — all you’ll see, cause [Hannah and I] hadn’t worked together for four years — but all you’ll ever see would be ‘Cool it man!’ [from Nick]. And everybody thinks I’m a bad guy. They always cut out. Every bit for him is he’s got a thing for me and I was really glad they finally put it in!”

Also Read: ‘New Girl’ Series Finale: Jess Has ‘Truly Terrible’ – and Underwhelming – News (Exclusive Video)

Johnson then broke down the scene he was referencing, which is a flashback in the series closer showing Nick and Schmidt moving into the loft right out of college. As he told the story, Greenfield and Simone stood by and tried (unsuccessfully) not to laugh.

“Cause the bit is — it wasn’t scripted that way, he improvised that,” Johnson said. “It was scripted, ‘What’s gonna happen in this loft?’And he goes, ‘I’m gonna hopefully meet a girl and have a kid.’ ‘Maybe I’ll be a writer and fall in love,’ [I say.] That was all that was in there. He improvises — I think I said to him, ‘What does she look like?’ And he improvises exactly what I look like.”

Oh, he does. Down to the gray beanie.

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“We laughed, the crew laughed. I thought, ‘Another garbage, throwaway moment.’ But finally what I appreciate is they did put that in. Cause that is what it was seven years! Every opportunity to make it a sexual bit between us, he would do, I would fight. We would do for three minutes, somebody would finally yell, ‘Guys stop! We’re never using it.’ But it was fun to do.”

Greenfield expanded on his dynamic with Johnson a bit more, talking about how so much of their on-screen banter was improvised over the years. And how his favorite came about in just the last few episodes.

“There is a moment that really had me crying laughing,” Greenfield said of a scene in Episode 2 in the final season. “Jake walks into the scene and he has some line about like, ‘That’s like a porcupine putting on a tie’ [laughs]. And I remember very vividly — and I don’t remember a lot of things cause my brain dies sometimes [laughs] — and improvising on every take, ‘Wow, wonder what that would look like.’ And I remember Jake saying for the first three takes, ‘Please ,stop improvising that, cause they’re gonna put it in the show.’”

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And of course, they did. “I saw it at home when it was on later. Done. One of the funniest things I’ve ever seen. That happened and just — tears.

OK, go back and watch that one now, cause you’re gonna need some happy tears after all the feels in the series finale.

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Spoiler alert: This article contains details of tonight’s two-episode series finale of Fox’s New Girl.
Who’s that girl? It’s Jess Day, who is moving on to bigger and better things.
Tonight, Fox aired the final two episodes of New Girl…

‘New Girl’ Creator Liz Meriwether Tells Us Where the Idea for Winston’s ‘Greatest Prank’ Came From

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Spoiler alert: Please do not read ahead unless you’ve seen the series finale of “New Girl”)

They didn’t have to move?!?

The series finale of “New Girl” aired Tuesday night, ending the whole show with one of the most elaborate pranks Winston (Lamorne Morris) has ever pulled off on the Fox sitcom. Sorry, “Prank Sinatra.”

See, Winston, Cece (Hannah Simone) and Schmidt (Max Greenfield) had spent the entire final episode packing up Jess (Zooey Deschanel) and Nick’s (Jake Johnson) belongings, as the newly-married couple were being evicted from the loft that every member of the core group had lived in at one time or another, by a company called Engram Pattersky (which also happened to be the episode’s title). The night was full of laughter and tears and one last game of True American.

Also Read: ‘New Girl’ Series Finale: Jess Has ‘Truly Terrible’ – and Underwhelming – News (Exclusive Video)

Only just as they were done loading the truck, Winston revealed he had planned the entire ruse, and they didn’t have to move. What, you didn’t realize if you rearrange the letters in Engram Pattersky you get “My Greatest Prank”? Oh, snap.

Now, who would have thought Liz Meriwether’s goofy ensemble comedy would end with a twist that required “The Usual Suspects” like flashbacks to break it down? Oh, the creator said it was the only way to could have closed it once the writers thought of it.

“It was our writer — who’s been with the show since the beginning — Berkley Johnson, who came up with the idea,” Meriwether told TheWrap in an interview last week. “And as soon as he said it in the room, we were all just dying laughing. and it felt really right. And he loves word puzzles, so he came up with the Engram Pattersky; that, that spelled ‘my greatest prank.’”

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“But I think the idea of, we knew that we wanted Winston to have one big final prank,” Meriwether continued. “And he always goes too big or too small. So we were pitching around different ideas. And when Berkeley pitched that, it kind of made sense. I think we all felt like them getting evicted or having to leave the apartment was going to feel a little expected. So there was something great about the prank idea to give it a little bit of a final twist as opposed to, ‘Oh, they have to leave and it’s sad.’ It was great.”

It was the greatest, Liz.

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The last-ever episode of “New Girl” airs tonight, Tuesday, on Fox, and no one is ready for it. Least of all, Jessica Day (Zooey Deschanel) who is going to be the “bearer of truly terrible news” for the gang in the series closer. News that not everyone finds all that bad, actually.

In the clip above, which is exclusive to TheWrap, Jess and Nick (Jake Johnson) gather Cece (Hannah Simone), Schmidt (Max Greenfield) and Winston (Lamorne Morris) together at the loft to announce that — wait for it — they are being evicted within 24 hours and need to say goodbye to the home they have all (at one time or another) shared.

“Brace yourselves! Nick and I are moving out of the loft,” Jess says.

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*silence*

“That’s it?” Winston says, and it appears Cece and Schmidt are just as underwhelmed. “That’s what you called us here for? Why do you always think like a character in ‘The Baby-Sitters Club’?” Schmidt questions.

OK, it sounds like this is going to be a rough finale — both for those who are and are not upset about the upcoming move.

Also Read: ‘New Girl’ Series Finale: Jess Rocks an Eyepatch on Her Wedding Day (Exclusive Video)

Here is Fox’s official logline for the series finale, titled “Engram Pattersky” (we have no idea why): As Nick and Jess find out they are evicted from the loft, the gang takes a tour down memory lane, which includes a final round of “True American.” Story by Dave Finkel & Brett Baer; teleplay by Elizabeth Meriwether; directed by Erin O’Malley.

Watch the clip above.

The series finale of “New Girl” will air with an hour of back-to-back episodes tonight, Tuesday, at 9/8c on Fox.

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Jessica Day (Zooey Deschanel) is getting compliment after compliment on the day of her wedding to Nick Miller (Jake Johnson) in Tuesday’s penultimate episode of “New Girl” — too bad everyone is straight up lying to her face. A face partially covered by an eyepatch.

In a clip from the second to last installment of the Fox comedy, which is exclusive to TheWrap, we see Jess’ mother, Joan, (Jamie Lee Curtis) her best friend Cece (Hannah Simone) and Winston’s very pregnant wife Aly (Nasim Pedrad) all complimenting her.

“You’re as beautiful as the day you slid out of me,” Joan tells her. “No one is going to be able to take their eyes off you,” Cece adds.”You’re a vision,” Aly coos. They all deny she looks like a “pirate bride,” before 3-year-old Ruth speaks the truth.

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“Why are we lying to her?” Cece and Schmidt’s daughter questions. From the mouths of babes, right?

Here is Fox’s official logline for the seventh and final season episode, accurately titled “The Curse of the Pirate Bride” (see, Ruth was right!): Jess (Deschanel) & Nick’s (Johnson) wedding day is full of surprises and Winston (Lamorne Morris) & Aly’s (guest star Pedrad) big day arrives. Greenfield and Simone also star. Curtis, Dermot Mulroney, Rob Reiner, June Diane Raphael and Zoe Lister-Jones guest star. It was written by Ann Kim and directed by Josh Greenbaum.

Learn why Jess is wearing the eyepatch — and how they plan to work around it — in the clip above.

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The series finale of “New Girl” will air with an hour of back-to-back episodes tonight, Tuesday, at 9/8c on Fox.

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One ‘New Girl’ Writer Has Been Lobbying to Do That Furguson Episode for 4 Years

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Spoiler alert: Please do not read ahead unless you’ve seen Tuesday’s episode of “New Girl”)

OK, the only thing sadder than “Where the Road Goes” — the most recent installment of the final season of Liz Meriwether’s “New Girl” — is the fact that one writer on the Fox comedy has been planning that plot for years.

Seriously, showrunner Brett Baer told TheWrap in a recent interview that the man who penned the script for Tuesday’s episode, which centers around a one-year memorial service thrown by Jess (Zooey Deschanel) for Winston’s (Lamorne Morris) beloved cat Furguson, was lobbying to kill off the kitty for a long time.

“Well it was an easy decision to make, mostly because I think the author, Noah Garfinkel, had been pitching that idea for four years and finally, just to shut him up, we agreed to do it,” co-showrunner Brett Baer said, laughing. “Well he just keeps going like, ‘We gotta do that episode, right?’ And we’re like ‘Shut up. No.’ So finally we go, ‘Alright, give Noah one.”

Also Read: ‘New Girl’: Schmidt and Cece’s Life Has Become ‘the 3rd Act of a Darren Aronofsky Film’ (Exclusive Video)

“No, I think more importantly than all of that, we knew obviously that [Furguson] was a fan favorite and we loved working with him and really he made such a strong contribution to the show and to Winston’s storyline,” Baer added. “He was so important to Winston, we wanted to do an important episode for Furguson. And I think in a cool way, even in his absence, and this is all spoiler alert s—, but in his absence, I think it gave us an opportunity to really invest in the Furguson storyline with the magnitude that it had for the character and for us as writers.”

Baer said the somber episode — which is of course still hilarious, because it’s “New Girl” — also gave them the chance to showcase other fan favorites, who aren’t series regulars, in the show’s final year.

“Being able to bring in all those characters to drop by for the memorial service gave us the opportunity to get Damon [Wayans Jr, who plays Coach] back into the show and the LAPD-So-La-Te-Do singing group,” Baer said. “Those were all things we wanted to get back in. So this was a unique way to tell Furguson’s story and not even have him there.”

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And if you’re hoping to see even more beloved guest stars drop by before the series wraps, you are in luck, cause Baer said that yet another reunion is still to come.

“It was something we’d been looking for in the course of the season to come up with an episode or two that would force us — not force us — that would allow us to bring in a multitude of characters that you had seen over the course of the show. So we have that episode. There’s, in episode seven, something similar, which I won’t get into because we didn’t send that one out yet. Another one of the character’s dies. I’ll just tell you that! [laughs]”

The final season of “New Girl” airs Tuesdays at 9:30/8:30 c on Fox.

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