Billy Joel ‘Arc-thology’ TV Series In Development

Billy Joel
“Piano Man” Billy Joel bids Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum farewell on Aug. 4, 2015.

In a sign that Hollywood has finally run out of old TV shows and movies to reboot, they’re reportedly planning a TV series based on the lengthy music catalog of Billy Joel.

The idea being shopped around to networks is billed as the first time that a musician’s entire discography may be turned into a TV show, according to The Hollywood Reporter, which first reported the story.

The working title? Scenes From an Italian Restaurant, one of The Piano Man’s most popular songs, of course. 

“This series is going to focus less on Billy’s life and more on the stories inside his catalog of classic songs,” Steve Stark, MGM Television president of development and production, told THR, which reported that the series is termed an “arc-thology.”

It’s sort of like Movin’ Out, the jukebox musical based on the 70-year-old Hicksville native and Centre Island resident’s hits, except instead of dancing on stage to live covers of Joel tunes strung together by a thin plot, actors will bring to the small screen episodes based on his rearranged lyrics and song characters.

Writers will have plenty of material to work with from the sixth-best-selling musician of all time, who released more than a dozen albums between 1971 and 2001. Diving deep into Joel’s songbook to openly pitch songs that producers could potentially into future episodes of “Scenes” are the folks over at The A.V. Club.

The series development come on the heels of mostly well-received musical biopics Bohemian Rhapsody about Queen and Rocketman, telling the story of Elton John. 

MGM TV and Universal Music Publishing Group are developing the project with creator Kevin Fox, a producer and writer for Law & Order: SVU. Fox and Joel are both executive producers. 

When will this show actually see the light of day? Who knows. Surely he’ll mention it between songs at his monthly Madison Square Garden residency. 

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