NBC is on a search for stand-up and improv comedians for an as-yet-untitled sketch comedy franchise. THR reports that the network has tapped the former senior VP of Comedy Central’s Original Programming Tom Wallach to be the executive producer. Wallach will also preside over the search for new talent, which will draw from comedy clubs such as the Upright Citizens Brigade, Second City, and the Improv. The goal in mind is to create a vehicle that can help launch emerging talent to roles on other network original series, similar to what Saturday Night Live did by launching talent such as Jimmy Fallon, Tina Fey, and Amy Poehler.
The show is still in the development stage, and is being created unconventionally by first finding the talent and forming the show around them, rather than writing a show or coming up with a premise and then casting actors. This comes as a result of NBC’s move to experiment with forms of comedy outside of the sitcom, as they have recently been struggling to keep new sitcoms on the air; sitcoms such as The New Normal, 1600 Penn, Go On, and Guys With Kids have all been cut this year after only one season.