HBO orders space tourism comedy from Veep creator

Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Selina Meyer on Veep behind a deskVeep ends its award-winning run this year, but HBO will keep creator Armando Iannucci around when it’s over. HBO greenlighted a space comedy pilot from the Veep mastermind called Avenue 5. Avenue 5 stars Book of Mormon’s Josh Gad, House’s Hugh Laurie, Silicon Valley’s Zach Woods, and Lovesick’s Nikki Amuka-Bird.

Iannucci created, wrote, and executive produces the pilot about space tourism 40 years in the future when the solar system is everyone’s oyster. Notably steering the project is Will Smith who serves as executive producer.

Veep ends historic HBO run

Selina Meyer ends her seven-season reign on HBO in May. The political satire, starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus, followed a fictional vice president and her team as they tried to make an impact on the country while playing the daily games of American politics. Louis-Dreyfus won six consecutive Emmys for her role as Meyer. She holds the record for most Emmy wins as an actor for the same role. Though he left as showrunner in 2015 to maintain his family life in London, Iannucci won two Emmys for his work on the series.

The Scottish showrunner didn’t lay low after leaving Veep. Since his departure, he wrote and directed The Death of Stalin, another political satire that came out in 2017. Last year, he shot his own adaptation of David Copperfield starring Dev Patel as the titular character. Iannucci utilized both Laurie and Amuka-Bird for the film.

Avenue 5 boasts cast of space tourists

Iannucci’s new show boasts an impressive cast and HBO released a sizable amount of details about the series. Laurie leads the way as Captain Ryan Clark of the space cruise ship Avenue 5. Gad plays Herman Judd, a billionaire hotelier putting the money behind Avenue 5. Woods is Matt Spencer, Head of Customer Relations and Amuka-Bird stars as Rav Mulcair, Head of Judd Mission Control back home on Earth.

Other characters include an engineer, an elderly space enthusiast and retired astronaut, and an imposter described as “a born leader.” Mutiny on Avenue 5?

Though just a pilot order, HBO has little else in development. The only other HBO pilot with the green light is the Game of Thrones prequel starring Naomi Watts.

Billy Procida

Laughspin editor-in-chief Billy Procida is a stand-up comedian in New York City. He hosts The Manwhore Podcast where he talks to women he's hooked up with about sex, dating, and why they didn't work out. Reach him on Twitter.

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