After more than four decades, “Stupid Pet Tricks” (shown here) is finally ready for prime time.
The TBS cable channel is turning it into a 10-episode series. Sarah Silverman will host, David Letterman’s company will be a co-owner and Merrill Markoe will be a consulting producer.
Markoe created the notion in 1980, when she was head writer of Letterman’s morning show. That show died quickly, but Letterman moved to latenight in 1982 and stayed there for 33 years, always with “Stupid Pet Tricks” as an audience favorite.
Now TBS is re-imagining it as a half-hour series. Its announcement also re-imagined Silverman as “a comedy legend.”
The network has had success with reruns of comedy series (especially “Friends” and “Big Bang Theory”) and movies, but has had trouble with original shows. Its Conan O’Brien latenight show shrank to a half-hour, then ended; other shows have ranged from the oft-brilliant “Miracle Workers” (10:30 p.m. Tuesdays) and “Full Frontal With Samantha Bee” to a recent emphasis on wrestling, “Wipeout” and “Go-Big Show.”
This isn’t the first time that a late-night segment has been spun off. Jimmy Fallon’s “Lip Sync Battle” and James Corden’s “Carpool Karaoke” both became series; “Stump the Band” remains dormant