Laura Dern gets “Enlightened” by HBO

I loved Laura Dern long before she brought Ellen out of the closet.

But her appearance as Ellen’s lesbian crush Susan in “The Puppy Episode” said a lot about Dern’s willingness to support the LGBT community before Hollywood jumped on the gay rights bandwagon.

In an interview with DeGeneres in 2007, Dern said she didn’t work for a year and a half after the episode aired. But she remained proud to be a part of such a groundbreaking moment in cultural history.

Thankfully, TPTB came to their senses and Dern’s career returned to full speed ahead. Just last year she won a Golden Globe for her performance as Florida politician Katherine Harris in HBO’s movie Recount.

Now HBO has announced that it is bringing Dern back, this time in a comedy series. In Enlightened, Dern plays “a formerly self-destructive woman who, after having a spiritual awakening, becomes determined to live an enlightened life, creating havoc at home and work.” Mike White, who became friends with Dern when she starred in his film Year of the Dog, is writing the pilot. He hopes to shoot it by the end of the year.

Since I never get enough Laura Dern, I couldn’t be happier about the prospect of seeing her on a series. And I think the premise is ripe for comedy, especially in the less restrictive creative environment of cable.

Are you ready to be Enlightened? Does this series sound like a winner? What’s your favorite Laura Dern role?

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