EXCLUSIVE: We have the first big sale of the 2022-23 broadcast development season. NBC has handed a pilot production commitment to St. Denis Medical, a half-hour mockumentary-style workplace comedy from the Superstore and American Auto duo of Justin Spitzer, who created both series, and Eric Ledgin as well as Universal TV, where Spitzer and Ledgin are under overall deals. Additionally, Spitzer’s Uni TV-based Spitzer Holding Company has hired NBC comedy executive Simon Heuer as Head of TV Development.
Written by Spitzer and Ledgin, St. Denis Medical is a mockumentary about an underfunded, understaffed Oregon hospital where the dedicated doctors and nurses try their best to treat patients while maintaining their own sanity.
Spitzer, Ledgin and Heuer executive produce for Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group, and Spitzer Holding Company.
This marks the latest workplace comedy for Spitzer, whose very first writing credit was on an episode of NBC’s medical comedy series Scrubs. He later joined NBC/Uni TV’s mockumentary workplace comedy The Office at the start of Season 3 as an executive story editor and remained on the Emmy-winning series through its ninth and final season, rising to co-executive producer. Spitzer went on to create, executive produce and serve as showrunner on two other NBC/Uni TV’s workplace comedies, Superstore and American Auto.
Under his overall deal with Universal Television, which he extended last year, Spitzer continues as showrunner and executive producer on American Auto, which was renewed for a second season, while also developing new projects across various platforms via his Spitzer Holding Company, with Heuer now overseeing development and producing alongside Spitzer.
Heuer joins the Spitzer Holding Company from NBC, where he started as a page and worked his way up to VP of Comedy Development. While at the network, he had a hand in developing several comedies, including Superstore, The Good Place, A.P. Bio, Marlon, American Auto and Peacock’s Bust Down.
Spitzer and Heuer worked closely together on Superstore and went on to develop the pilot and first season of American Auto; Heuer will serve as co-executive producer on American Auto’s upcoming second season .
“Simon has always been one of my favorite executives to work with. He’s a true collaborator with a talent for figuring out ways to improve a project when it needs it, and the confidence to not mess with a project when it’s working,” Spitzer said. “When I thought about the ideal executive to help me develop new series, I thought, ‘I want a Simon Heuer type.’ And Simon fit the bill.”
While Spitzer’s entire experience to date has been in broadcast, Heuer indicated that that is about to change.
“I am thrilled to join Spitzer Holding Company and work alongside Justin in a new capacity. We love big, fun and inclusive broadcast comedy, and it is a thrill to continue working with the fantastic teams at NBC and UTV on American Auto and now St. Denis Medical,” he said. “We’re just getting started but hope you’ll hear more from us soon as we look to expand our reach and dip into cable and streaming markets as well.”
Ledgin recently served as a co-executive producer on UTV’s Rutherford Falls for Peacock and he also served as an executive producer on season one of American Auto. He previously worked as a writer-producer on Mrs. Fletcher, Superstore and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and also was a writer on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.
Spitzer is repped by UTA and Morris Yorn Levine Krintzman Rubenstein Kohner & Gellman. Ledgin is repped by WME, Mosaic and Felker Toczek Suddleson Abramson McGinnis Ryan.