Community co-showrunners Neil Goldman and Garrett Donovan have inked an overall deal with 20th Century Fox TV.
As part of the two-year pact, Goldman and Donovan will develop and supervise new projects for the studio. In doing so, the duo will relinquish control of the Sony-produced comedy, with which they’ve been involved as writers and producers for the show’s three seasons. (If it’s picked up for a fourth, one source suggests creator/co-showrunner Dan Harmon, producer Chris McKenna or someone new would run NBC’s Community.)
“We’ve had our eye on them for a long time,” 20th Century Fox TV Chairman Dana Walden tells The Hollywood Reporter, noting that Goldman and Donovan are not only “incredibly funny” but also “incredibly beloved.”
In this particular case, Walden credits the passion of 20th TV’s comedy head Johnny Davis for making the deal happen, acknowledging that it was he who came to her and her partner Gary Newman several times throughout the development process to suggest the pair was ready to branch out and urge 20th to set a meeting.
“Gary and I had to support this deal at a certain point just to have Johnny stop talking about them,” Walden jokes, adding: “When you have a creative executive that has that kind of passion for two writers, it’s impossible for that sentiment not to become contagious.”
The Emmy-nominated writing partners, who started as staff writers on Fox’s Family Guy before jumping to ABC’s long-running Scrubs, have spent the last six years under overall deals at NBC/Universal. Looking ahead, Goldman and Donovan will likely jump onto one of 20th’s pilots in a matter of weeks, while simultaneously developing their own vision.
Goldman and Donovan are represented by UTA and Ziffren Brittenham.