Image: Marvel Studios
Beyond prestige genre dramas, HBO also has some pretty funny comedies under its belt like Barry and Insecure. The next comedy in the works at the network is The Franchise, which will focus on a group of crew members who work together on the set of a popular superhero movie franchise.
Created by 1917’s Sam Mendes and Avenue 5’s Armando Iannucci, and with Succession writer Jon Brown as showrunner, the upcoming series recently landed a pair of recurring guest stars in Richard E. Grant and Daniel Brühl, both of whom have a history with being baddies. Grant played the older evil Loki in Loki last year (plus X-Men villain Xander Rice in 2017’s Logan), and Brühl has been scheming and serving looks in the MCU as Baron Zemo since 2016’s Captain America: Civil War. (Zemo, at least at time of writing, isn’t yet confirmed for the upcoming Thunderbolts movie, based on a team that his comics incarnation usually headlines.) Hopefully, that repeated real world experience allows the two really stretch their comedic chops.
The show also picked up five series regulars in Billy Magnussen (Aladdin), Jessica Hynes (W1A), Isaac Powell (West Side Story), Lolly Adefope (Ghosts), and Darren Goldstein (Ozark). No secondary details were given about any of the cast’s characters, beyond their names: Adam (Magnussen), Steph (Hynes), Peter (Powell), Dag (Adeforpe) Pat (Goldstein), a second Peter (Grant), and Eric (Brühl).
With how superheroes have become the defining moment in pop culture for the last 10 or 20 years, it’s not like The Franchise will be lacking in material to mine for its comedy. HBO’s track record with comedies is generally strong, so hopefully The Franchise doesn’t become a one-and-done when it eventually premieres on the network in the near future.
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