Actress JoAnna Garcia Swisher has been added to the cast of Dan the Weatherman, a new sitcom in development at Fox.
According to Variety, the beautiful redhead will play Deborah, taking over the role from Ashley Williams, who filmed the show’s initial pilot. Swisher became free after her last TV series, Kevin (Probably) Saves the World, was canceled this spring by ABC.
Fox also recast the role of Dan Jr., which featured Dashiell McGaha-Schletter in the pilot. Nine-year-old Jack Stanton, who hilariously played youngest child Ben in another Fox series, the now canceled The Mick, will be added to the series.
Variety said Swisher and Stanton will re-shoot the pilot this summer with the other cast members. Thomas Lennon, known for his funny stints in CBS’ The Odd Couple and Comedy Central’s Reno 911!, plays the title character, Dan, and actors Natalie Ceballos, James Earl, and Daniel Stern co-star.
The series is about a weatherman who gets fired from a cushy job at a large television station. He is then forced to take a new gig at the local cable station.
The single-camera comedy will not be part of Fox’s fall schedule but may be picked up for midseason. Deadline reported that network honchos were impressed by Lennon’s performance but had other issues with the pilot.
Swisher has been acting since she was a child in the early ’90s. Many TV fans most recognize her from the WB/CW sitcom Reba, in which she played a new mom, and country superstar Reba McEntire’s teenage daughter, Cheyenne, from 2001-2007. Most recently she’s starred on several ABC series, including Once Upon a Time (as Ariel), The Astronaut Wives Club (as Betty Grissom), and the aforementioned Kevin (Probably) Saves the World (as Amy Cabrera).
In February, Swisher discussed the idea of a Reba reboot with Us Weekly, saying “I think everybody would love to [do it].” In addition to McEntire, the show also featured Steve Howey, Christopher Rich, and Melissa Peterman.
“I know there has definitely been a lot of talk about it,” she told the magazine. “There is so much love there, and such fond memories of our time on the show. I feel like we kind of ended before we really wanted to, and I think there is a lot of goodwill in that world, and I know everybody would be supportive of it.”
The 38-year-old has been married to former MLB player and current Fox sports analyst Nick Swisher for seven years. The couple has two daughters, 5-year-old Emerson and 23-month-old Sailor.