After nine years of playing Dwight Schrute on The Office, it’s easy to forget that Rainn Wilson wasn’t always a comic actor. Fans of Six Feet Under and Rob Zombie’s “House of a 1,000 Corpses” might remember the actor in slightly more serious but still very odd character-based roles. According to Entertainment Weekly it seems that Wilson is once again returning to his roots with the CBS pilot Backstrom.
The pilot, which is based on a popular Swedish detective series of the same name, will feature Wilson as Det. Backstrom an “overweight, offensive irascible cop as he tries and fails to change his self-destructive behavior”.
The pilot, which also stars Dennis Haysbert, appears to be a drastic departure from CBS’s lineup of interchangeably bland procedurals so it will be interesting to see how the concept will be eventually defanged and ruined for the benefit of CBS’s key demographic: people slowly dying from old age in the rec room of a nursing home.
In a related side-note, NBC recently aired Wilson’s unsold pilot The Farm as a part of last Thursday’s episode of The Office. Apart from the schizophrenic nature of the episode and the awkward storytelling qualities that all pilots exhibit, The Farm looked rather promising and it’s disappointing that it didn’t develop any further. Here’s hoping that things work out for Backstrom.