Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Elisha Cuthbert Gives the Old-Fashioned Sitcom a Try with 'One Big Happy'

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Elisha Cuthbert Gives the Old-Fashioned Sitcom a Try with 'One Big Happy'

Article excerpt

Elisha Cuthbert gives the old-fashioned sitcom a try

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Elisha Cuthbert's search for happiness continues.

Her first sitcom was called "Happy Endings." Her new one, which begins Tuesday on NBC, is called "One Big Happy."

"I didn't have to change my handle so that was really exciting," jokes Cuthbert, who goes by the Twitter name @HappyElishas.

The Calgary-born actress, who began her career in Montreal as a young teen co-hosting "Popular Mechanics for Kids," rocketed to fame back in 2001 as the daughter of action star Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) on "24."

Maxim Hot 100 lists, a Gemini award and magazine covers followed. Her professional life has been all comedy the past five years, with "One Big Happy" her first traditional four-camera, studio audience sitcom.

At first, Cuthbert told the producers -- who include Ellen DeGeneres -- there was a problem with her joining the show.

It had nothing to do with the fact that the part being offered was a lesbian.

"Is it challenging? No. It's like playing a human being," she told reporters in Pasadena, Calif., in January.

Cuthbert plays Lizzy, who wants to start a non-traditional family and raise a child with Luke, who she grew up next door to (played by Nick Zano from "2 Broke Girls"). Lizzy is inseminated but then Luke falls for a free-spirited British woman named Prudence (newcomer Kelly Brook). Before you can say "Three's Company," they're all living under one roof and hilarity ensues.

It's pretty much lifted from the life of showrunner Liz Feldman, formerly a writer/producer on "2 Broke Girls."

Zano was cast first as Luke and when the producers were searching for Lizzy he raved about Cuthbert; the two had worked together on "Happy Endings."

Cuthbert wasn't scared of the character -- it was the process.

"I can't do a multi-camera show," she told the producers. …

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