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Kevin James is returning to CBS, sort of

by Brad Trechak, posted Jan 12th 2009 12:05PM
The King of QueensThe King of Queens is not returning to CBS. However, Kevin James is. He's performing in a series of interstitials on Monday night in an effort to promote his soon-to-be-released movie Paul Blart: Mall Cop.

Will this launch James to movie stardom? I don't know. He's following the title formula of such movies as Ace Ventura: Pet Detective and Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigalo, so we can probably guess the format and formula of the film.

Not every comedy TV star can make the transition to movies, and I don't know if Kevin James has the personality to hold a film on his own. It worked for Jim Carrey because of his wild, character-driven personality and it worked for Rob Schneider because...actually, I don't think it worked for Rob Schneider. If it did, I have no idea why.

It's interesting to note that Paul Blart is produced by Sony Pictures and The King of Queens was produced by Sony Pictures TV. Sony Pictures must own Kevin James' soul.

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It's always about the writing. It's gotta be.

January 12 2009 at 4:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

They dumped it in January. If it was any good, they would have released it a month ago.

January 12 2009 at 3:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The marketing being done for this movie smells of desperation.

January 12 2009 at 1:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jim Morris

What made "King Of Queens" work was, as with many good sitcoms, its ensemble, most especially Jerry Stiller and Patton Oswalt, as well co-star Leah Remini. and recurring players Larry Romano, Nicoile Sullivan, and even semi-regular Lou Ferrigno as himself.

Otherwise, Kevin James was basically a second-rate retread of Jackie Gleason's "Ralph Kramden," which itself had already been lifted in animated form for "Fred Flinstone' and, partly, as an everyman by Carroll O'Connor for his "Archie Bunker" characterization. O'Connor himself had admitted this, that "Archie" was derived from a combination of Gleason's most famous character and James Cagney.

This is not to totally minimize James' comic ability--he was able to infuse "Doug Heffernan" with some of his own traits. But what annoyed me most about that show was Remini's skank factor (then seeing footage of her, along with some other Hollyweirdos, at a Scientology rally annointing Tom Cruise as the head anti-Christ) and the negative nepotism broght by the casting of James's talentless brother (as the lead character's cousin), who acts under the moniker "Gary Valentine."

This show was a spin-off, of sorts, from "Everybody Loves Raymond, even though would have been better to have posthumously spun off the "Robert Barone" character of Brad Garrett after "Raymond" ceased production.

I think Doris Roberts and some of that sitcom's other ensemble players and semi-regulars would have stayed with such a venture had it been developed. Certainly the dysfunctional family of "Robert's" wife, "Amy" (Monica Horan), as played by Georgia Engel, Fred Willard and Chris Elliott, would have been interesting. And it looked as though Elliott's character of annoying nerd, brother "Peter" was heading toward the altar with "Ray" nemesis" Amy Aquino, who played "Peggy Hitler" in a few episodes.

January 12 2009 at 1:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Jim Morris's comment

Jim - it's called Magic .. and it's almost impossible to get it. This is why so many shows fail. All you need is 1 wrong person and the show fails.

January 13 2009 at 10:09 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I thought Kevin was terrific in "Hitch". He was really acting, not playing another variation of Doug Heffernon, so I have high hopes for his new movie.

January 12 2009 at 12:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Speaking of Rob Schneider, Paul Blart was produced by Happy Madison, Adam Sandler's company. Sandler is the only reason that Rob Schneider is still working. Kevin James was in I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry a few years ago...

January 12 2009 at 12:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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