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TV Show About An Uptown Donut Shop Facing Gentrification Is In The Works

By Mae Rice in Arts & Entertainment on Mar 2, 2016 4:06PM

A pretzel doughnut from Bridgeport Bakery. (Photo credit: Chicagoist/Chuck Sudo)

Brian d’Arcy James, star of “Spotlight” and brave carrier of a very long name, has just been cast in a CBS comedy pilot about a Chicago donut shop trying to survive gentrification, according to Variety.

The show, titled “Superior Donuts,” sounds roughly like “The Office,” but for donuts. Set in “a gentrifying neighborhood of Chicago,” specifically Uptown, it will follow the shop’s staff and patrons as they make and eat donuts and presumably do other things.

d’Arcy James will play the store owner, Arthur—“a typically gruff to-the-point Chicagoan,” as Variety puts it. (I had never heard of this Chicago stereotype before!) He’ll co-star with comedian Jermaine Fowler, who will play a new shop employee, Franco.

It’s Franco who sees gentrification coming, and threatening their scrappy shop. The show follows his quest to update the shop, and Arthur’s worldview, for the 21st century.

Our prediction: There will be at least one episode, if not an arc, about donuts with bacon on

The show is based on a 2008 play by Pulitzer Prize-winner Tracy Letts, also titled “Superior Donuts.” It premiered at Steppenwolf Theatre in 2007.