"Guys With Kids" is exactly what it sounds like -- three buddies in New York City who also happen to be dads.
NBC's TCA Press Tour panel for "Guys With Kids" had stars Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Zach Cregger, Jesse Bradford, Anthony Anderson and Tempestt Bledsoe, as well as executive producers Charlie Grandy, Amy Ozols, Kenny Schwartz, Rick Weiner and, via satellite, "Guys With Kids" executive producer Jimmy Fallon. (Newly cast Erinn Hayes, who will play Bradford's character's ex, was on location shooting a movie in New York and couldn't make the panel.)
The show has been getting mixed reviews from critics already, mostly because it's a more traditional, multi-camera sitcom, but Fallon (who said, "I love multicamera sitcoms!") insists there isn't a laugh track. The reactions to jokes are all coming from the live studio audience, a fact that Fallon wants James Earl Jones to announce at the top of the show. If they can't get Jones, Fallon has offered to work on his impersonation.
The whole script for the pilot started with the image Fallon had of three guys standing in a bar, backs to the camera, watching a game on TV, Grandy said. They turn around to reveal that they all have babies in Baby Bjorns strapped to their chests. (Cue audience laughter.)
But the idea for the show was born out of something even simpler: DILFs. Yep, if you know what a MILF is, DILFs is the dad version of that term, and was also the original title of the series when Fallon and Ozols pitched it to NBC.
"NBC said, 'Yeah, we probably can't call the show DILFs, but we'll change that,'" Fallon said before putting this show in the same sentence with classic NBC fare like "Cheers," "Family Ties" and, yes, "The Cosby Show." (Cue shout-out to Bledsoe.)
While the cast teased that Bledsoe was hired to save NBC, her onscreen hubby Anderson had the best reason for taking this gig: "I get to kiss my childhood crush!"
But it can't all be a dream job -- to balance out the fun of hanging with the guys is the difficulty of raising kids. Working with babies is notoriously tricky, but on "Guys With Kids," that's compounded by the live taping of the show. Ozols admitted that they pre-taped a lot of the scenes with the children, just as backup, but Weiner insisted that the kids came alive for tape night.
Fallon had another take on the challenges of making children main characters on TV: "Those kids from the original pilot have grown older -- they're now in the band One Direction."
Tell us: Are you excited to see "Guys With Kids"? Do you think TV needs more traditional, multi-camera sitcoms?
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