Nearly thirty years after he rode a motorcycle into America's collective heart, Henry Winkler is still an in-demand TV star. Fresh off returning to his beloved role as Barry Zuckerkorn on the resurrected fourth season of 'Arrested Development,' Winkler has signed on to play a character based on himself, in an upcoming semi-autobiographical multi-camera comedy for ABC, Deadline reports.
The as yet untitled project is a joint venture by 'Everybody Loves Raymond' creator Phil Rosenthal, Henry's son Max Winkler, and Henry's son-in-law Rob Reinis. All three men will write the pilot script, while Rosenthal will direct. The show is being designed as a star vehicle for the now 67-year-old former 'Fonz,' and is based on his real-life relationship with his son-in-law. It centers on a construction worker that learns unexpected life lessons after being forced to move in with his in-laws. Henry will (naturally) be playing the father-in-law character. The other roles have yet to be cast.
While ABC hasn't committed to anything more than the production of a pilot at this point, it would really be surprising if they turned down a comedy starring a legend like Henry Winkler. The cherry on the top of the sundae is the presence of Phil Rosenthal, who guided 'Everybody Loves Raymond' to nine successful seasons and over 200 episodes, most of which was spent at or near the top of the ratings. ABC would be foolish to even consider passing this up.