"The King of Queens" alumna Leah Remini is going to headline a new TV show. The 43-year-old actress is set to star on a yet-to-be-titled reality show produced by Gurney Productions for TLC.
"Leah is a no-nonsense, hard-working, relatable mom, wife, daughter, and sister. Her sharp humor and unfiltered family are a perfect match for the network," says Nancy Daniels, general manager of TLC, in a statement. "This series continues our focus on creating compelling series about remarkable families, using heart and humor to anchor it to the TLC brand."
The network has ordered 12 half-hour episodes of the new project. Remini's husband Angelo and their 9-year-old daughter Sofia will also be featured on the reality show, which kicks off production on Wednesday, March 5 for a summer premiere.
Known for her role as Stacey Carosi on NBC's sitcom "Saved by the Bell" and as Carrie Heffernan on CBS' "The King of Queens", Remini was also a co-host on "The Talk" before she was fired in 2011. She competed in season 17 of "Dancing with the Stars" and has a recurring role on TV Land's original comedy "The Exes".
Her career aside, Remini recently made headlines after opening up about her reason for leaving the Church of Scientology. "I started thinking of my own childhood and how I grew up resenting my mother because she was never home. In my house, it's family first - but I was spending most of my time at the Church. So, I was saying 'family first,' but I wasn't showing that. I didn't like the message that sent my daughter," she told Buzzfeed.
She added, "In the Church, you're taught that everybody is lost. They say they're loving, caring, non-judgmental people, but secretly, they were judging the world for not believing what they believed. To me, that is not a spiritual person. That's a judgmental person and that is the person that I was. I was a hypocrite, and the worst thing you can be in this world is a hypocrite."
The Church later hit back at her, calling her a person with "an insatiable craving for attention" who "would exploit her former faith as a publicity stunt by rewriting her history with it, including omitting that she was participating in a program to remain a Scientologist by her own choice, as she was on the verge of being expelled for her ethical lapses."