The 41-year-old television and Broadway star Neil Patrick Harris recently signed on to host a new variety show on NBC. The announcement came less than two weeks after Harris was chosen to host the 2015 Oscars.
According to The New York Times, the show is based on the popular British variety show, “Saturday Night Takeaway.” Harris and NBC have agreed to film 10 episodes, which shows NBC’s confidence in the show,
The title and schedule of the show have not yet been determined. However, it will be produced live in front of an audience, just like NBC sketch show, “Saturday Night Live.”
Harris has appeared in countless TV shows and movies since his debut in the series, “Doogie Howser, M.D.” in 1989. His role as Barney Stinson in “How I Met Your Mother” was where many believe Harris received most of his fame.
Harris has enjoyed success hosting award shows, such as the Tony and Emmy Awards, likely leading to his selection as the headliner.
New York Daily News even called Harris “the new Regis Philbin.”
Harris might have to use his clout and popularity to push the new show forward, as a conflict has already threatened the show’s existence.
The Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE), which would likely write the show, is threatening to strike the show, according to Deadline.com.
ITV Studios America, the producer of the show, is in the midst of a labor dispute with WGA East. The two sides do not have a contract in place and have argued over ITV’s reality TV shows in the U.S.
According to Yahoo, Harris is a noted union supporter and hostedthe 2009 WGA West’s awards show.
In response, Harris tweeted this on Tuesday, Nov. 4: “Know this: my variety show will absolutely be crafted by union writers. I’ve been assured by ITV that it will be a WGA show. Period.”
Editor’s Note: Information from The New York Times, New York Daily News, Deadline.com and Yahoo was used in this article.