The series follows obstetrician/gynaecologist Mindy Lahiri (Mindy Kaling) as she tries to balance her personal and professional life, surrounded by quirky co-workers in a small medical practice in New York City. The character was inspired by Kaling's own mother, an OB/GYN. Mindy explores through life with the help of her co-workers: Danny Castellano, her best friend and love interest; Jeremy Reed, a handsome British doctor who Mindy used to sleep with in Season 1; Morgan Tookers, an ex-con nurse; and Peter Prentice, another doctor who was in a frat while he was attending Dartmouth.
Cast and characters
Mindy Kaling as Dr. Mindy Lahiri, a romantically frustrated OB/GYN at Shulman & Associates.
Chris Messina as Dr. Danny Castellano, another OB/GYN at the same office; Mindy's main frenemy; both doctors ignore the obvious romantic chemistry between them and settle for lesser choices in the interim.
Ed Weeks as Dr. Jeremy Reed, Mindy and Danny's somewhat hapless supervisor at the office.
Zoe Jarman as Betsy Putch (season 1-2), the optimistic receptionist at the office.
Ike Barinholtz as Morgan Tookers (episodes 13, 15-onwards; recurring 2–12 and 14), a registered nurse at the office.
Beth Grant as Beverley Janoszewski (episodes 15-onwards; guest episode 2), former nurse turned receptionist at the office.
Xosha Roquemore as Tamra (season 2-onwards, recurring episodes 22-24), a nurse at the office.
Adam Pally as Dr. Peter Prentice (season 2-onwards; guest season 2, episodes 3-4), a new gynaecologist at the office.
Anna Camp as Gwen Grandy (Main cast episodes 1–12; guest episode 17), Mindy's long-time friend who has settled down with a family.
Amanda Setton as Shauna Dicanio (episodes 1–12), was a receptionist at the office.
Stephen Tobolowsky as Dr. Marc Shulman (Episodes 1–8), the former senior partner of the practice.
Tommy Dewey as Josh Daniels, a lawyer; Mindy's former boyfriend.
The series was initially commissioned by NBC, but the pilot with the working title It's Messy was released from NBC's projects on January 27, 2012. Universal then sent the script to Fox executives who read it over that following weekend. On January 30, 2012, Fox greenlit the pilot, with Mindy Kaling attached to star.
Casting announcements for the remaining series regular roles began in February 2012, with Ed Weeks cast in the role of Dr. Jeremy Reed, a sexy, British doctor in the practice. Zoe Jarman and Dana DeLorenzo then joined in series regular roles. Jarman signed on to play Betsy Putch, an upbeat receptionist at the practice; whilst DeLorenzo joined as Shauna Dicanio, a young, party loving receptionist in the practice. In mid-March, Chris Messina joined the cast as Dr. Danny Castellano, an arrogant doctor who works at the practice. Shortly after, Anna Camp boarded the series as Gwen Grandy, a stay-at-home mom and Mindy's best friend.
On May 9, 2012, Fox placed a series order for the comedy. Two days later, the title was changed from It's Messy to The Mindy Project. Two months later, Amanda Setton, Stephen Tobolowsky and Ike Barinholtz joined the series. Setton replaced Dana DeLorenzo in the role of Shauna; Tobolowsky joined in the series regular role of Dr. Marc Shulman, the senior partner of the practice; and Barinholtz signed onto the recurring role of Morgan Tookers, a quirky rehabilitated ex-con who joins the practice as a nurse. On August 27, 2012, the pilot episode was made available to view online on various sites including Fox, in an attempt to garner interest in the series. On October 8, 2012, Fox ordered a full season of The Mindy Project.
In the middle of the first season, the network made changes to the show's cast. On November 20, 2012, it was reported that Amanda Setton's role had been eliminated and that Anna Camp had been downgraded to a recurring cast member. Stephen Tobolowsky's role was also eliminated, with his character retiring in the eighth episode. Beth Grant, who guest starred as Nurse Beverly in episode two, returned as a series regular in episode fifteen.Ike Barinholtz was also upgraded to series regular.Xosha Roquemore, who guest starred in the final few episodes of season one as Tamra, was upped to series regular beginning with season two.Adam Pally, who originally signed on for a recurring role, was upgraded to series regular during season two.
On March 4, 2013, the series was renewed for a second season, which began on September 17, 2013. On November 21, 2013, Fox announced that The Mindy Project would take a mid-season hiatus, before returning on April 1, 2014.
Fox announced the third season renewal of The Mindy Project on March 7, 2014. On April 30, 2014, it was announced that Jarman would not return for the third season.
The Mindy Project received positive reviews from critics, with many highlighting the writing of the series, Kaling's performance, Kaling's unique character and the direction of the series. Review aggregation website Metacritic, which assigns a weighted mean—out of 100—based on reviews from mainstream critics, the show received a score of 69 from 32 reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews." It was the number-six best-reviewed show according to the site's fall 2012 season.