Against the Grain was a charming family show on CBS about insurance salesman Ed Clemons taking on the task of coaching the slumping high school football team of the small, but football-crazy town of Sumpter, Texas. He is given just one season to turn the fumbling teens around, and he throws himself into the job wholeheartedly. Though his methods ruffle the feathers of the quiet little town, he manages to make some real progress with the players.
Dave served as Co-Executive Producer, Writer & Showrunner.
Starring John Terry, Donna Bullock, Ben Affleck, Vanessa Evigan and Stephen Tobolowsky.
From Dave: "In the casting process my writing / producing partner and I were pressured by the top executive at NBC to dump who we wanted for our young lead, a new actor by the name of Ben Affleck. He said, "I just don’t ever see this guy on the cover of a magazine.” We disagreed with his assessment and had a standoff. We won the battle only because Les Moonves, the head of the studio (and now CEO and Chairman of CBS) backed us and said he believed in us and wanted who we wanted. A few years later when Ben was on the cover of Esquire as one of the hottest actors on the planet, I sent a copy to the executive with a note that said, “Do you see him on the cover of a magazine now?’ This was one of the first times I learned you have to trust your gut and stick to your guns. TV is a collaborative process, but when you believe in your vision, you have to stand by it. Of course it helps when the head of the studio has your back! I’ve always had a sincere respect for Les Moonves since."
This was another show where we were able to hire some incredible up and coming actors who've gone on to long careers, people like Wayne Knight, Shiri Appleby, Tim Griffin, Robin Lively, John Rubinstein, Rick Peters, John Posey, Denise Richards, Michael Cudlitz and Michael Warren just to name a few.