Sharing Steve :: New Stuff
Saturday, November 13, 2004
 

Martin-Stein some more


Daily Variety
November 12, 2004, Friday
SPECIAL SECTION1; Pg. A3
'Mindy,' 'Perez' among prod pipeline projects
SARAH SCHMELLING

Joan Stein isn't coy about her thoughts on Steve Martin, her partner in the television production firm the Martin/Stein Co.

"The man's a genius," she says. "Truly, that's not an overstatement."

Collaborating often in the 10 years since Stein first produced Martin's play, "Picasso at the Lapin Agile," in cities across the country, Stein says the two formed early what has proven to be a lasting bond. Four years ago they decided to expand this professional relationship by creating a television company.

It's a business that's ramped up in recent months. In September, Martin/Stein announced a deal with Carsey-Werner to produce the tentatively titled "Mindy and Brenda," a WB half-hour laffer utilizing the writing/acting talents of Mindy Kaling and Brenda Withers, creators of the play "Matt and Ben." ("About two female twentysomethings living on the cheap in Brooklyn," Stein says.)

The company is also overseeing "The Perez Family," a sitcom created by Mark Perez about a multigenerational Cuban-American family, in the works at Fox. And in October, Martin/Stein voiced its involvement in ABC's "The Scholar," a reality show in which 15 high school seniors who might not otherwise have a chance for a college education compete for a full scholarship to a school of their choice. Stein says Martin and she have different but complementary professional styles.

"If each person brings to the table the same thing, there's no reason to have a partnership," Stein says. She takes care of many day-to-day details, but they come together on all the important creative and business decisions.

"Imagine taking that enormous creative talent of Steve's and infusing any project with his perspective and his attitudes and experience and comedy and point of view-it always raises the bar."

She gladly calls Martin a "real gentleman" and a wonderful friend.

"So, you know, lucky me. Coming to work is fun."

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