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October 1, 2014

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'Cougar Town' Co-Creator Bill Lawrence Reacts to Bad News from ABC

by Alex Moaba, posted Nov 19th 2011 4:05PM
'Cougar Town' got dealt some bad news late on Friday afternoon, when it was left on the bench for the second half of ABC's fall schedule. Fans took to Twitter to vent against ABC's decision and wondered if this meant the beloved niche comedy was canceled. But before anyone could change their avatars in a 'Community'-style show of support, Deadline reported 'Cougar Town' would return in March, with its episode order cut from 22 to 15.

'Cougar Town' co-creator Bill Lawrence, who goes by VDOOZER on Twitter, joined fans in reacting to the unfortunate news. "Look, we will be back, and the show will be on for a long time (Parks and Rec style). Only people hurt by reduced order - crew and fans," he tweeted.

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'Cougar Town' Stars Will Crossover to Other Shows

by Chris Harnick, posted Oct 13th 2011 10:35AM
Courteney Cox Crossover'Cougar Town' is still benched until midseason, but the show has hatched a creative plan to keep the cul-de-sac crew on TV.

According to USA Today, the cast will be popping up on more than a dozen shows as uncredited background actors. Starting on Thurs., Oct.13 the cast will be infiltrating shows across several networks. Look for Ian Gomez to kick things off at 9PM ET on 'Grey's Anatomy' and Courteney Cox and Christa Miller to play a lesbian couple at a fertility clinic on 'Private Practice' at 10PM ET on ABC.

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Development News: Snoop Dogg Heading to NBC, Bill Lawrence Sells Firefighter Comedy

by Chris Harnick, posted Oct 6th 2011 12:30PM
Snoop DoggWatch out, Whitney! It looks like Snoop Dogg could be NBC's newest star. The rapper/actor has sold a comedy to the network, TheWrap reports.

Snoop will produce and star in the multi-camera family comedy. 'Two and a Half Men' and 'Everybody Hates Chris' veteran Don Reo is executive producing and writing the project.

This isn't Snoop's first family-themed series. For two seasons he starred in 'Snoop Dogg's Father Hood,' a reality series on E!.

Snoop also appeared in an episode of '90210' last season.

In other development news ...

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Casting Roundup: Sarah Chalke on 'Cougar Town,' Plus 'Community,' 'Glee' & More

by Alex Moaba, posted Sep 10th 2011 5:30PM
'Scrubs star' Sarah Chalke is headed to 'Cougar Town.' TVLine reports that Chalke will be joining the wine-soaked ABC comedy in a recurring role as Bobby's photography professor and love interest.

It's a reunion for Chalke and Bill Lawrence, the co-creator of both 'Scrubs' and 'Cougar Town.' Lawrence has steadily been recruiting 'Scrubs' actors for his new show -- so far he's nabbed Ken Jenkins, Sam Lloyd, Robert Clendenin, Zach Braff and Scott Foley to serve double-duty.

In other TV casting news, we're about to meet the parents on 'Community', 'Glee' and 'Nikita.' Check out the details after the jump.

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'Cougar Town' Name Change: For Real This Time?

by Chris Harnick, posted May 31st 2011 11:25AM
Cougar TownBill Lawrence has been on a quest to change the name of his hit ABC sitcom from 'Cougar Town' to something else for more than a year. There was talk of it happening before season two, but it never happened.

Instead, the creators just mocked the name with new title cards, such as "Badly titled 'Cougar Town,'" every week. However, with a new season afoot, it looks like Lawrence and co-creator Kevin Biegel are opting for a name change, again.

"Screw it. I'm changing it (if Kevin's cool w it. Someone ask him for me)," Lawrence tweeted. "Seriously, we just decided. Will use fans to help w new title."

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'Cougar Town' Stars Pop Up on 'Community' -- Will the Character Crossovers Go Both Ways?

by Alex Moaba, posted May 7th 2011 1:18PM
NBC has released a picture from next week's 'Community' season finale (paintball part deux, part deux) that appears to confirm rumblings we've been hearing that a multi-network 'Community'-'Cougar Town' crossover episode is in the works. This development marks an awesome next step in the referential love-fest that's been going on between the two shows for well over a year.

What's the evidence? Check out 'Cougar Town' actors Dan Byrd and Busy Philipps standing behind 'Community' actors Donald Glover, Danny Pudi and Alison Brie in the background of this photo.


Pretty cool, right? The two shows have been engaged in a friendly ping-pong game of mutual admiration lately, and now it's really starting to get fun.

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Bill Lawrence: Ted From 'Scrubs' Will Appear in 'Cougar Town' Finale & Other Surprises

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 16th 2011 9:00AM
Penny Can! on 'Cougar Town'
It's always fun to talk to Bill Lawrence because you never know where the conversation is going to go. When I spoke to him earlier this week, the conversation ranged from ratings to his wife Christa Miller appearing on the Howard Stern show to 'Hanna Montana.'

But the best parts are the tidbits about his show, 'Cougar Town.' For instance, Lawrence told me that Sam Lloyd will appear in the show's Hawaii-based second-season finale, as his 'Scrubs' character, hapless lawyer Ted Buckland, a move that had been rumored a few months ago. He'll be there to help Travis through some tough times.

"We were outlining the show to have a friend [of Travis'] that's had his heart broken there in Hawaii, and we're like, who should we cast? And I'm like, I'll tell you, we should get Sam Lloyd out there and put him with his guitar," said Lawrence. "It's one of my favorite bits of the year. Because it's a gag that Sam Lloyd can do, which is, he can take any popular song with a guitar, and make it depressing."

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Why You Should Pour a Glass of Wine and Watch 'Cougar Town'

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 6th 2010 3:15PM
TV gods, save us from high-concept comedies.

Apparently the ABC executives who bought 'Awkward Family Photos' haven't learned anything from the non-success of '$#*! My Dad Says,' a strained show based on a Twitter feed. Why should we think a show based on a book about dorky pictures will fare any better?

The highly enjoyable 'Cougar Town' (9:30PM ET Wednesday, ABC), on the other hand, is an object lesson in how much more satisfying a comedy can be when it rejects its high-concept roots and focuses on creating a home for an amusing collection of individuals.

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Bill Lawrence on 'Cougar Town,' Jennifer Aniston and Character Names

by Joel Keller, posted Sep 20th 2010 2:00PM
Courteney Cox and Jennifer Aniston in the Season two premiere of 'Cougar Town' on ABC
How do you get your people to see a show with a lousy title? Casting Jennifer Aniston in your second season premiere helps. Bill Lawrence, co-creator of 'Cougar Town' (returning Wednesday, September 22 at 9:30PM ET on ABC) knows Aniston's drawing power, which is why the placement of her much-anticipated reunion with her former 'Friends' co-star Courteney Cox is not just a coincidence.

"If I just did a normal episode, ABC's priorities would be launching 'Modern Family' and launching their new shows," he told me earlier this month. "And if I got Jennifer Aniston to be in the first one, I knew they would have, and it without a doubt happened, that they would respond with financial backing for the launch."

In the usual wide-ranging interview with the gregarious Lawrence, I asked him about Aniston, who plays the new therapist of Cox's character Jules Cobb, and what he thinks her next career move might be. We also talked about some upcoming plots and storylines for 'Cougar Town''s second season. And we conclude by having a discussion about character names, especially where the last name of Busy Philipps' character came from.

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More With Bill Lawrence: Changing Shows Midstream, Hanging With Howard Stern and More

by Joel Keller, posted Sep 20th 2010 2:00PM
Courteney Cox and Jennifer Aniston in Cougar Town
Here are some outtakes from my hour-long talk with Bill Lawrence earlier this month. To go back to the main interview, click here.

On trying to find a new name for 'Cougar Town:'
We had a bunch of things that we thought were kind of good and we researched them and no one seemed to dig those either. Because now we have all this access to information. One of the things I like that Disney does is they test things like that with fan groups, people who like your shows anyways, because they have all that Disney 2000 s--t and the only one those people really liked was 'Sunshine State' and they already had a show called 'Mr. Sunshine' coming out.

Not coincidentally with Matthew Perry. So why don't we make it even more confusing?
So it's sunshine with the Friend's cast, right? And by the way, for me now it's a challenge. If I can get more people to tune into the worst titled show of all time, that's a huge win. 'How I Met Your Mother,' tough title when I first saw it, and now it's 'HIMYM' or whatever the hell it is.

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Bill Lawrence & Christa Miller Talk Guest Stars, Liquid Lunches & 'Cougar Town' Season 2 (VIDEO)

by Maggie Furlong, posted Sep 15th 2010 6:30PM
Bill Lawrence & Christa MillerIn case you missed the memo, 'Cougar Town' isn't just about dating younger men anymore. To be honest, it's not really about dating at all -- since the series premiered last fall, it's become an ensemble comedy about a group of friends who hang out and drink wine. Lots and lots of wine.

Now in its second season (premieres Wed., Sept. 22, 9:30PM ET on ABC), 'Cougar Town' gets to shake things up a bit, with big guest stars (like one of star Courteney Cox's oldest 'Friends' Jennifer Aniston, who's in the premiere), an empty nest for Jules and some new romances.

I caught up with series creator Bill Lawrence and his wife Christa Miller, a.k.a. Jules' BFF Ellie, to hear all about Season 2, dream guest stars (for Christa to make out with) and why real red wine is no longer allowed during work hours.

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EXCLUSIVE: Ken Jenkins of 'Scrubs' to Play Courteney Cox's Dad on 'Cougar Town'

by Joel Keller, posted Sep 3rd 2010 5:10PM
Ken Jenkins as Dr. Kelso on 'Scrubs'Fans of 'Cougar Town' haven't seen much of the family of Courteney Cox's character of Jules Cobb, outside of her son Travis and always-there ex-husband Bobby. But that will change during the show's second season, according to creator Bill Lawrence... and fans of 'Scrubs' will see a familiar face in the role.

"I hired Ken Jenkins this morning to play Courteney's father," Lawrence told me earlier today. "Because I only work with the same 20 actors, Joel, you know that."

Jenkins played crusty hospital administrator Dr. Bob Kelso on 'Scrubs' for nine seasons, the last two of which showed Kelso having to deal with a forced retirement. Lawrence hopes that Jenkins will stick around the ensemble for a while.

"To me what was fun was casting somebody that hopefully will be in the world too and poke his head around. He's such a great actor... the guy's funny as sin."

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It's Official: Jennifer Aniston to Visit Courteney Cox in 'Cougar Town'

by Jean Bentley, posted Aug 23rd 2010 2:00PM
Courteney Cox and Jennifer AnistonA 'Friends' reunion is definitely happening this year -- on ABC's 'Cougar Town,' at least.

The network announced today that Jennifer Aniston will join fellow Friend Courteney Cox in the season 2 premiere of Cox's 'Cougar Town,' set to air on Sept. 22 at 9:30PM ET. This marks the first small screen reunion for the longtime pals since Cox's last TV venture, the FX series 'Dirt.'

Show creator Bill Lawrence told EW.com that Aniston will play Jules' psychiatrist, Bonnie.

"[She's] kind of a get-too-involved-in-her-life-type of therapist," Lawrence said. "Those guys are so close in real life they kind of do that for each other anyway. Bonnie has the life Jules wishes she has."

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'Cougar Town' - 'Letting You Go' Recap

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 29th 2010 10:02AM
Courteney Cox, Brian Van Holt, and Dan Byrd in 'Cougar Town' - 'Letting You Go'(
(S01E21)
Jules Cobb is TV's creepiest mom, but in a good way.

We've known from the beginning of this series how close she is to her son Travis; it's a twisted 'Gilmore Girls' situation, where a young mom is relating to her kid more as a buddy than as a mom. But thrown into the buddy mix is Jules' paralyzing fear that Travis is going to grow up and leave her all alone. So when you see Jules make a sport out of watching her son sleep -- she calls it the "sleepy show" to Laurie and Ellie when they join in -- you're not nearly as creeped out as you should be.

And that, my friends, is why this show has managed to transcend its original premise and succeed.

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'Cougar Town' - 'Wake Up Time' Recap

by Joel Keller, posted Apr 15th 2010 10:51AM
Courteney Cox and Dan Byrd in 'Cougar Town' - 'Wake Up Time'(S01E20) Because of the loose nature of the latest episodes of 'Cougar Town,' it's a show that's become very difficult to review.

I can scramble around, trying to write down every funny line that was uttered, which won't give me a chance to really take the show in like I should. But if I take the show in and just absorb it for the plots and characters, I'm finding that I sit in front of my computer to write and can't recall any particularly strong plotlines to talk about. They feel more like plot threads, which are hard to grab and hold onto.

This week those plot threads were a little stronger; they were more like plot ropes. Which, in light of the funny but head-scratching episodes we've seen in the last few months, gives me hope that a balance is being struck.

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