Fox's new comedy Ben and Kate, which is already earning early positive buzz from critics, will move forward without two of its executive producers. Garrett Donovan and Neil Goldman, who joined the comedy in May as showrunners, have departed to focus on their own series development.
There are no immediate plans to replace Donovan and Goldman. Dana Fox, whose real-life older brother Ben was the inspiration — and namesake — for the male lead in Ben and Kate (played by Nat Faxon), created the show and will continue to oversee it.
According to several sources, the exit was amicable, and both sides are parting ways on good terms. Donovan and Goldman were assigned to Ben and Kate soon after signing a deal with 20th Century Fox TV in May, but insiders said ultimately it wasn't quite the right fit.
The highly regarded Donovan and Goldman left Community at the end of last season, having worked closely with series creator Dan Harmon as executive producers during the show's first three years. Now, the duo will be able to focus on creating their own show under their new deal.
Producer changes are common early in the TV season as shows settle in for the season. On ABC's Nashville, Dee Johnson recently stepped in as showrunner and executive producer, replacing Jim Parriott; Marco Pennette replaced Gail Lerner as showrunner on NBC's Animal Practice; and Joshua Sternin and Jeffrey Ventimiglia took over as showrunners on ABC's midseason comedy The Family Tools.
Ben and Kate stars Faxon and Dakota Johnson as mismatched siblings. The show premieres Tuesday, Sept. 25, at 8:30/7:30c on Fox.