Kristin Chenoweth Is the New Lead on NBC's Trial and Error'

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Trial and Error has found its new lead.

Kristin Chenoweth will join the sophomore season of NBC's mockumentary-style courtroom comedy, the network announced Thursday. Chenoweth will replace John Lithgow, who toplined the freshman season.

Chenoweth will play Lavinia Peck-Foster, the first lady of East Peck who is a larger-than-life grand dame -- at least in her own mind. An eccentric heiress known for her flamboyant outfits, large hats and hairless cat, Fluffy, who has not left the confines of Peck Gardens in ages, Lavinia calls on Josh Segal and Associates -- the team that got off Owl Murderer Larry Henderson (Lithgow) -- to defend her after she was found with her husband, Edgar, stuffed into a suitcase in the back of her car. 

Nicholas D'Agosto, Jayma Mays, Steven Boyer and Sherri Shepherd, who appeared in season one, will return.

“I’m excited to slip into a role that feels very right for me at this time,” Chenoweth said in a statement. “Plus, I’m surrounded by genius comedic actors and brilliant writing. I admire John Lithgow so much and want to make him proud by continuing what he began.”

Chenoweth's pal, Kathy Griffin, was equally enthusiastic for her casting news, taking to Twitter to praise the 49-year-old actress' new role. Chenoweth responded in kind with a hilariously sweet tweet.

“We are delighted to have such a comedic powerhouse join our show,” said Trial and Error executive producer and creator Jeff Astrof in a statement. “When we decided we were doing a murderess, we knew there could be only one person big enough to fill John Lithgow’s skates. She was our first choice all along and thankfully for us became available at the right time. Murdering and karaoke in East Peck will never be more fun.”

On the TV side, Chenoweth won an Emmy for her role on Pushing Daisies and was nominated for her guest-starring stint on Glee. Notable small-screen credits include The West Wing and most recently, American Gods, Younger and Mom.


James Corden Has a Duet-Off With Kristen Chenoweth, Beth Behrs, and Julie Chen -- Watch!