Scoop: Jerry O'Connell Cast as Herman Munster in NBC's Mockingbird Lane

Jerry O'Connell Mockingbird LaneMockingbird Lane has found its new Herman Munster.

Jerry O’Connell (Crossing Jordan) has landed the role of the the Munster family patriarch in the NBC reboot, TVLine has learned.

The role was originated by Fred Gwynne in classic ’60s version.

The project, which was originally slated to go into production in the spring but got pushed back until early summer due to casting issues, is being stewarded by Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller and X-Men auteur Bryan Singer. Whereas the original was a comedy, the remake is being billed by NBC as a “visually spectacular one hour drama.”

O’Connell, who most recently starred opposite James Belushi in the CBS procedural The Defenders, joins previously cast Eddie Izzard (as Grandpa) and Mason Cook (as Eddie).

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  1. TigerNightmare says:

    Fingers crossed for Kristen Bell.

    • MacTosh says:

      Well, that’s not happening, Tiger, since she’s a regular on Showtime’s House of Lies which got a second season.

      • ZmaX says:

        there is a slight chance that it could happen since cable shows have a different filming schedule than network shows. House of Lies season 2 goes into production in October & will air in February, so if this show starts filming in early summer like the article says, it might work, possibly with “Mockingbird Lane” being a mid-season replacement. But I’m not holding my breath.

  2. anthonynewhall says:

    Okay, it’ll be okay. He looks it and is funny, so okay.

  3. cfolliot says:

    And the show is dead before it started.

    • Brock says:

      Agreed. Not a fan.

    • tarc says:

      And why would that be? Fullers work on Star Trek is classic, and Pushing Daisies was astonishing television. Let’s add that the take is somewhat similar to the Monster High concept – the most popular pre-teen and tweener doll series in ages. With the demo being prepped with Twilight and now Monster High, there is a built in buying audience there.

      • cfolliot says:

        Jerry O’connell dummy, I actually like the Munsters and hoped it had a shot, but no way is it going to be successful now.

        • tarc says:

          Though I wouldn’t have thought of him, he’s kinda perfect. After all, it’s not going to be Fred Gwynn (admittedly adorably) mugging, but both more realistic and more fantastical.

    • Keenan says:

      Yep. Hiring just because of height.

  4. Lev says:

    This seems like perfect casting, actually. Good job

  5. Trent says:


  6. Emily says:

    I really hope this one sticks, I love Jerry O’Connell. He has not had good luck, he’s like one failure from officially being a show killer.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Love this guy! He’s got so much charisma and is genuinely funny. I’m looking forward to this remake. I hope they make it work out well.

  8. ggny says:

    well doesnt look like ill be adding Munster to my dvr next season

  9. Nichole says:

    No offense to Jerry, but anyone who is not Brad Garrett is a wasted casting opportunity.

    • They’re casting the part of Herman Munster, not Fred Gwynne. If they were making a movie about the making of the original Munsters, then, sure, Garrett would be a clear choice to play Gwynne, but that isn’t the case here. If Garrett played the part then it would be done just to appeal to fans of the original who want a carbon copy of Gwynne’s performance.

    • tarc says:

      Ugh. I can’t stand that guy. It’s a total mystery how he gets hired.

    • Tim says:

      There’s mean quality to the actor that I think comes out in his roles. And with Herman, you can’t have any of that. Jerry is an excellent choice for the role.

    • murley says:

      too obvious and uninspired.

  10. Amanda says:

    God I love Jerry. I am so in.

  11. Kasper F. Nielsen says:

    With or without Jerry O’Connell I can’t see this show not bombing completely.

  12. Daniel says:

    Is the a straight to series order or just a pilot?

  13. checkermate says:

    omg…brad garrett is a no brainer….but i do love jerry o’connell. pure nostalgia, hope it’s good!

  14. Now we just need Kristin Chenowith as Lily.

  15. DL says:

    I just saw him in Seminar on Broadway and he was actually really funny. So I think he’ll be good. :)

    • but this isn’t a comedy. “Whereas the original was a comedy, the remake is being billed by NBC as a “visually spectacular one hour drama.””

      • elf says:

        Comic actors are often far more adept at drama than dramatic actors are at doing comedy. Plus, while Sliders had its goofy moments, it was primarily a drama, wasn’t it?

      • TV Gord says:

        This will be a drama the way Desperate Housewives was a drama. There will be a good dose of humor, as well.

  16. Ralph says:

    Dead on arrival. Show has no chance…at least not in my house. The original is classic perfection. NO need for this

  17. angelcat2865 says:

    A drama???? Your are kidding right?

    • wordsmith says:

      Well, think of Fuller’s other shows, like Pushing Daisies, Dead Like Me and Wonder Falls. Those were both dramas in the broader sense of the term, but there was obviously a huge amount of comedy there. In someone else’s hands, I’d be worried, but he can make it work.

      • Tess says:

        And sadly, they all didn’t fare well…all great shows, but drew such small audiences they were cancelled in the matter of a couple of seasons. I can see where Fuller’s going with this reboot, but unfortunately for him and the show, most people will be expecting a true to the original remake and not “get” this version.

        As a side note, I guess this means we can count Jerry out for the “Live With Kelly” co-host seat.

        • tarc says:

          Um, the original only lasted two seasons, and is considered a classic… like his work on Star Trek and Pushing Daisies. Twilight, Monster High, and all the other teen supernatural romance trend has prepped the demo for this type of show. We’re getting a Dr. Jeckyl/Mr. Hyde show and a Beauty & The Beast redo. Those genres are hot.

        • Kel says:

          I had the same thought, I enjoy him as Kelly’s cohost – he’s not afraid to tell stories about his life.

          I’ll give this show a shot – I never thought Grimm or OUAT would work either.

  18. MacPhisto says:

    So… I guess this means no reboot of Sliders this year?

  19. Chrispy says:

    I think a better supernatural-based show would be a real-life drama about the deal Jerry O’Connell made with the devil to keep getting TV shows.

  20. TV Gord says:

    I guess he’s taking himself out of the running for the co-hosting gig with Kelly (although he’s on with her next Monday and Tuesday).

    It took me a few minutes to process this, but I can see it. He’s got a little zaniness in him that I can see being useful in this role. He’s a good choice.

  21. AJ says:

    I wonder what this means for Lily Munster. I was hoping for Lucy Lawless, but if they’re casting “against type”, then she’s probably not right for the role.

    And Fuller’s previous comments about Lily Munster being “at one with nature” would almost suggest an actor more suited to play Snow White. Still, Lucy Lawless turned down the lead in Crossing Jordan and Bryan Singer cast her in his failed Football Wives series, so the stars may align and she’ll end up working with Jerry after all.

  22. Izzy says:

    As much as I like Bryan Fuller’s work, how many mid season shows are the guy working on for NBC? Munster & Hannibal together is a bit ambitious isn’t it? I just hope it will all work out.

  23. I really can’t see this working at all. I’ve nothing against O’Connell at all, but telling me he’s playing Herman Munster makes me laugh.
    I just don’t see it at all.
    Maybe Chenowith will get cast, purely as she’s so small she’ll make Jerry look gigantic?!

    • tarc says:

      It’s not The Munsters, so it’s impossible to say whether it will work or not since we haven’t seen the changes. Fuller’s site says Herman will be in a “constant state of decay”, and one plotline will involve needing a new heart… from a living donor.

  24. Couch Potato Cop says:

    Keep in mind : this is just for a pilot only. NBC has already announced their fall line-up, and the Munsters reboot is not on it.

  25. Tim says:

    Great casting. Jerry, from everything I have seen of him, projects the same nice guy quality that the character Herman always did.

    This shows a lot of potential for the pilot being picked up.

  26. JTV says:

    This is NOT a pilot. It has a straight-to-series order.

  27. Templar says:

    I’ll watch it for Eddie Izzard, and hope to be persuaded by the rest.

  28. kirads09 says:

    Not criticizing Jerry. It may work. But my pick for that role would’ve been Titus Welliver.

  29. tahina says:

    With luck it will last one season, but JO has never done anything worth watching, not funny in my book,

  30. Geegeedub says:

    So, it has come to this, Jerry.

  31. murley says:

    i am really looking forward to this. i love bryan fuller and i really like what i have heard so far about the concepts for the reimagining. while some reboots are a ridiculous waste not all are and this shouldn’t be dismissed outright just because it is taken from an old concept. look at battlestar galactica or bbc’s sherlock. or even the office u.s. all came from other shows/concepts and became something great in their own right. saying something will suck and you won’t watch it just because it’s a reboot really just makes you sound like an obnoxious, pretentious fanboy.

  32. Kevin says:

    I still say Ed Helms would make a perfect Herman Munster. He looks and acts just like Fred Gwynne.

  33. Audra Guches says:

    This remake will BOMB!!!!! You cannot improve on the original…….plus horrible casting!!!