"Dead Like Me," a pilot that starred Mandy Patinkin, Ellen Muth, Rebecca Gayheart and Jasmine Guy, looks likely for Showtime's 2003 season. Variety reports that the series is one of two dramas — along with "Earthlings" — to get orders for next year.
"Dead Like Me" will join other original Showtime programs, which include "Queer as Folk," "Jeremiah," "Soul Food" and "The Chris Isaak Show." The pilot — penned by "Stark Trek" writer and producer Bryan Fuller — concerned a dead teenager who returns to life in a "form that's unrecognizable to her family and friends." There is no word about air dates.
Mandy Patinkin won a Tony Award for his role as Che in the Broadway mounting of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's Evita. His theatrical work includes roles in The Wild Party, Sunday in the Park with George, The Secret Garden and The Knife. An Emmy Award winner for his role on "Chicago Hope," his other screen credits include "Yentl," "Ragtime," "Dick Tracy," "Broken Glass," "Life with Mikey" and "The Princess Bride." Patinkin's latest solo recording, "Mandy Patinkin Sings Sondheim," is now available on the Nonesuch label.
In related news: Mandy Patinkin will bring his personal Sondheim celebration to the Henry Miller Theatre beginning Monday, Dec. 2. Patinkin will perform Mandy Patinkin in Concert: Celebrating Sondheim on Sunday and Monday evenings from Dec. 2, 2002 to Jan. 6, 2003 at the theatre. Patinkin will also offer one Tuesday evening performance on Dec. 24. Paul Ford, the original pianist for Sondheim's Passion, Into the Woods, Sunday in the Park with George and Assassins, will accompany Patinkin on piano.
—By Andrew Gans