When Larry Wilmore takes over Stephen Colbert’s slot on Comedy Central in January next year, what will his show–The Minority Report–actually consist of? “We’ve got seven and a half months to really figure it out,” says Comedy Central president Michele Ganeless. But if everything goes according to plan, the show could be more than just a hilarious take on the day’s news. It could function as a key farm team for new Comedy Central talent.
The Minority Report setup will be similar to The Daily Show and Colbert Report, but with a twist: For parts of the show Wilmore will be joined by a panel of co-hosts, presumably along the lines of The View or Real Time With Bill Maher. “The general concept is Larry will be the anchor of the show and the first act will likely be Larry’s take on the news of the day or cultural hot topics of the moment,” says Ganeless. “Then [there will be] a panel. The panel will be the second act, we’ll likely have a guest interacting with the panel in the third act.”
The idea is for the group to reflect a range of points of view. “It’s not being done right now in late night–a panel of diverse voices, a panel of underrepresented voices,” says Ganeless. “This is the African American point of view, the female point of view, the Latino point of view, on all issues of the day. It’s holistic–it’s not just about looking at a black point of view and black issues. It’s giving these underrepresented voices an opportunity to be heard on all issues. That array of voices will be a big part of the show.”
The group format will also function as a showcase for emerging talent that Comedy Central could tap in other ways later on. “The way we identify talent and is having different kinds of vehicles where we can expose young, interesting points of view,” says Ganeless. “The Daily Show has certainly been that, our stand-up farm team has been that. @midnight has become a great opportunity for us to see and get to know different comic voices. The Minority Report will be another place where we will have a stable of comic voices that we come to like, agree with, disagree with, (that) our audience hopefully can have a conversation with. People come to The Daily Show to hear Jon’s point of view. People come to The Colbert Report to hear Stephen’s point of view. Hopefully people will come to this show not only to hear Larry’s point of view but because they love panelist A or panelist B and they want to hear what they have to say every night.”