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‘What About Barb?’: Ben Lawson Cast In NBC’s Reboot Pilot

Deadline logo Deadline 3/10/2017 Denise Petski
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Former The Deep End star Ben Lawson is set as the male lead opposite Leah Remini in What About Barb?, NBC’s single-camera comedy pilot based on the 1991 Frank Oz movie What About Bob?

Written and executive produced by Joe Port and Joe Wiseman, What About Barb? centers on Suzanne (Remini), who tries to cut ties with her most overbearing patient, Barb, but is unsuccessful and gains an annoying family member in the process. Lawson will play Ryan, Suzanne’s fiance, a former Ohio State linebacker who maintains manliness while basically doing the duties of a housewife. A super nice guy, Ryan is a bit of a mimbo — not the academic type Suzanne has dated in the past.

The cult black comedy film starred Bill Murray as the eponymous Bob, a psychiatric patient who joins his psychiatrist, Dr. Leo Marvin (Richard Dreyfuss), and his family on vacation. The TV reboot, from ABC Studios, goes for a gender switch, with a female patient, Barb (Jessica Gunning) and Dr. Suzanne Marvin (Remini).

Lawson, one of the leads in ABC’s The Deep End, recently recurred on Doubt as Laverne Cox’s love interest and on Don’t Trust the B*tch in Apartment 23 as Krysten Ritter’s love interest. He also played the lead role of a disillusioned Wall Street attorney in USA’s Wild Card and starred in Paramount’s romantic comedy No Strings Attached. He’s repped by Untitled Entertainment, ICM Partners and Myman Greenspan.

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