Rosamund Pike, Chris O’Dowd Starring in ‘State of the Union,’ a 10-Minute TV Comedy

Stephen Frears will direct all 10 episodes of the SundanceTV project.

Rosamund Pike and Chris O’Dowd are pairing up onscreen for an abbreviated new TV comedy. The two will star in State of the Union, a project from Nick Hornby that’s targeting episodes around 10 minutes in length.

State of the Union, produced for See-Saw Films for SundanceTV, follows a couple (Pike and O’Dowd) and their weekly meetings in a bar before they head off to couples’ therapy. Stephen Frears will direct all 10 episodes, with Hornby writing.

“I am so pleased to be working again with Stephen, Rosamund and Chris,” said Hornby, the prolific novelist and screenwriter. “I first met Stephen when he directed High Fidelity, Rosamund when she revealed her wonderful comic talent in An Education, and Chris when he made the forthcoming Juliet, Naked, and I think they will make a tremendous team. State of the Union is an unusual project, so it’s all the more gratifying that we have managed to attract talent of this magnitude.”

The short running time will be a relief for many of those who’ve lost sleep thanks to the abundance of Peak TV. No immediate word on how SundanceTV will package it for a linear run, given the unconventional episode lengths, but the project starts shooting this summer in London.

Amy Jackson will produce for See-Saw, with Jamie Laurenson, Hakan Kousetta, Iain Canning, Emile Sherman, Hornby and Frears executive producing. “Sundance is thrilled to partner with our good friends at See-Saw Films on this shortform original production,” said SundanceTV GM Jan Diedrichsen. “We are fortunate to have a dream team in front of and behind the camera to bring to life Nick’s intimate, entertaining and relatable story of a modern marriage to life.”

Hornby has not been a big TV guy, though his output on the small screen has been on the rise. He received a credit on NBC’s 2015 sitcom adaptation of his novel About a Boy and also wrote five-part BBC miniseries Love Nina in 2016.

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