Cheers actresses Kirstie Alley and Shelley Long are making a comeback to the small screen - with starring roles in two new sitcoms.

Long has joined an untitled NBC sitcom project, while Alley is set to play Ricki Lake's mother in a CBS comedy pilot.

Lake will play a young widow - whom along with her mother - is raising her two sons after the death of her policeman husband, while also running a bar frequented by cops.

In echoes of her time on Cheers, the pilot reunites the Alley with the show's creator/executive producers DAN STALEY and ROB LONG.

Meanwhile Long's NBC comedy centres on the relationship between an adult son, Mitch Rouse from comedy series THE SECRET LIVES OF MEN and his newly divorced father, played by SHIRLEY VALENTINE's Tom Conti.

The OUTRAGEOUS FORTUNE star will play the mother, replacing first choice Beverly D'Angelo who left the project by mutual agreement.

Both Alley and Long won EMMYS for their performances on Cheers as REBECCA HOWE and DIANE CHAMBERS respectively.

31/03/2004 17:02