Kevin James will star in a NASCAR-themed comedy that will launch on Netflix in 2020, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing announced Wednesday.
This will mark James' first return to series TV since "Kevin Can Wait" ended a two-season run on CBS in 2018. NASCAR — with headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Daytona Beach, Florida — did not say where the show will be produced. "Kevin" was produced at Gold Coast Studios in Bethpage.
NASCAR said James — who will star and executive produce — will be reunited with Jeff Sussman, his longtime production partner on "The King of Queens" and "Kevin Can Wait," who will also serve as executive producer.
Per a story on NASCAR's website, James will play a crew chief in a NASCAR garage, an "old-school sort, more likely to don a Darlington Throwback than anything else. But his old-school ways will be out of style with a rapidly modernizing sport: Think your dad telling you to put the cellphone away at dinner in order to have an actual face-to-face conversation."
A "Darlington Throwback," by the way, refers to Darlington (South Carolina) Raceway's annual "throwback" weekend, when cars are decked out in gaudy paint schemes popular in past decades.
NASCAR offered few other details, other than head writer (veteran sitcom writer Jeff Lowell, of Netflix's "The Ranch" and CBS' "Two and a Half Men") and title ("The Crew"). But NASCAR is expected to play a considerable role on-screen and off: Two senior executives involved in digital operations and entertainment marketing, Tim Clark and Matthew Summers, respectively, were also named executive producers.
The series marks James' third venture for Netflix, following the 2016 movie "True Memoirs of an International Assassin" and 2018's stand-up special, "Kevin James: Never Don't Give Up." James — born in Mineola and raised in Stony Brook — is also set to star in his first action-thriller, "Becky." He's scheduled to perform a stand-up show Sunday at The Paramount in Huntington.