ABC to Adapt Hit BBC Parenting Comedy ‘Motherland’ (EXCLUSIVE)

After several years in the works, British comedy sensation “Motherland” is getting a U.S. adaptation on ABC.

Variety understands ABC is close to signing a pilot order for an American remake of the hit BBC comedy. The show was previously set up at Hulu by Lionsgate, which has world distribution rights, but migrated to ABC — which is arguably a much broader platform — last year.

“Motherland” has aired on the BBC for three seasons since 2016. Set in a west London neighbourhood, the show follows a wacky group of mothers (and a father) who couldn’t be more different, but are united by the daily school run and a shared abhorrence for those who take parenting a little too seriously.

Produced by “Catastrophe” creator Sharon Horgan and Clelia Mountford’s Merman Television, the show is written by Horgan, Helen Serafinowicz, Graham Linehan and Holly Walsh. It first premiered on BBC Two in 2016, and has grown into one of the U.K.’s most successful contemporary comedies. Season 3 aired in 2021, and a Christmas special went out in December.

On the U.K. show, Anna Maxwell Martin plays the uptight, middle-class Julia, who — despite being on the verge of a nervous breakdown at any moment — forms a close bond with working-class mum Liz (Diane Morgan) and feeble dad Kevin (Paul Ready). The group’s friendship only deepens as they go to war with Lucy Punch’s Alpha Mum Amanda.

“Motherland” is beloved by British critics for its frank and often hilarious commentary on the thankless nature of parenthood, all of which is heightened by knock-out performances by its cast. The show won the BAFTA for best scripted comedy in 2022.

To date, the British series has been available on AMC+. Its American counterpart on ABC will join comedies such as “The Goldbergs,” “The Conners” and Emmy winner “Abbott Elementary.” The broadcaster is likely to be on the hunt for a family-oriented replacement for “The Goldbergs,” which is coming to an end in May after 10 seasons.

ABC and Lionsgate declined to comment on this story.

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