Jennifer Hudson is in the mix to be the star of a new daytime talker that Warner Bros. is pitching to TV stations to debut next fall, sources confirmed Friday.
Hudson has shot a pilot for the show, executive produced by Warner Bros.’ The Ellen DeGeneres Show EPs Mary Connelly and Andy Lassner, that Warner Bros. execs are now shopping.
An ideal slot for the show is on NBC owned stations and affiliates in the afternoon, paired with NBCUniversal’s Kelly Clarkson. Both Clarkson and Hudson gained fame after their runs on American Idol, with Clarkson winning the show’s first season and Hudson coming in third on season three and then going on to win the Oscar for best supporting actress in Dreamgirls in 2007.
Kelly Clarkson, which is now in season three and has been renewed through 2023, airs ahead of Ellen on NBC owned stations and on many affiliates around the country. The NBC stations have said that they plan to move Clarkson into Ellen’s time slots next season after Ellen concludes its run. That gives Hudson an opportunity to take Clarkson’s slots, but there are many potential time slots available on TV stations for a new show.
The Jennifer Hudson project is the first one to rise to the surface for the 2022-23 TV season after the pandemic slowed development. This year, only two new shows debuted: Fox's You Bet Your Life, starring Jay Leno, and Debmar-Mercury's Nick Cannon. Both of those shows debuted on Fox owned stations in top markets.
Hudson most recently starred as Aretha Franklin in movie Respect, and has appeared as a judge on both the US and UK versions of The Voice.
Variety first reported this story.
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Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.