Tag: pretty little liars

Life Sentence (The CW) pilot preview: Pretty Little Cutie Pies

Written and produced by Erin Cardillo & Rich Keith (Significant Mother, Fuller House). Executive produced by Bill Lawrence (Scrubs, Cougar Town, Undateable) & Jeff Ingold (Ground Floor, Undateable). Directed by Lee Toland Krieger (Riverdale, Beyond, Adaline, Celeste & Jesse Forever). 61 pages. Network Draft Revised 01/11/2017. For Warner Bros. Television & Doozer Entertainment.

Description: When Stella, a young woman diagnosed with terminal cancer finds out that she’s not dying after all, she has to learn to live with the choices she made when she decided to “live like she was dying.” She then discover her family has been lying to her for the past ten years so she doesn’t worry. Now, she has every reason to worry…

With Lucy Hale (Pretty Little Liars, Privileged), Jayson Blair (Whiplash, Young & Hungy, The New Normal), Dylan Walsh (Nip/Tuck, Unforgettable), Gillian Vigman (New Girl, Suburgatory), Brooke Lyons (The Affair, iZombie, 2 Broke Girls), Elliot Knight (American Gothic, Sinbad, Once Upon a Time)…

   

You’ll like it if you already like: Jane The Virgin, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Life Unexpected…

First there was Jane The Virgin. Then came Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Now there’s No Tomorrow (which doesn’t have much of a future ironically). Despite underwhelming ratings -but rave reviews and rare prizes for the network- those hour-long dramedies are very much alive, as if The CW wanted to apologize for all their superhero shows -there will be 5 next year if Black Lightning is ordered to series!- by balancing them with lighter fares targeting millenial women. Before reading the script, I expected Life Sentence to be yet another romantic comedy with charming and colorful leads. It turned out the leads are charming and sometimes colorful but it is not that romantic. Though it can be. There are clichés about Paris and Amsterdam after all. But it’s mostly about a quirky, messy, relatable, instantly appealing family from Portland that we could enjoy spending a few years with.

First of all, let me introduce you to all of them. Stella, our heroine and narrator, is a 25 year-old decisive, strong woman, with a wry, sometimes morbid, sense of humor. She’s a cutie pie. I’m not a Pretty Little Liars fan but I feel like casting Lucy Hale in the starring role is the best thing that could have happenned to the project. She’s certainly capable and she does have fans that will sample the show. Wes is Stella’s husband, a cool guy’s guy. Paul is Stella’s father, a solid rock who rarely shows his feelings. Ida is Stella’s mother, a kind and emotional 55 year-old woman who owns a cheese shop called… Brie Yourself. Elizabeth is Stella’s older sister, an aspiring writer with a family of her own to take care of. Aiden is Stella’s older brother, an immature womanizer who still lives with his parents at 28. There’s also Dr Helena Chang, Stella’s awkward oncologist and the closest she has to a best friend; and Poppy, Ida’s best friend who has become an aunt for Stella and her brother and sister. We get to meet all of them through the pilot and have a pretty good idea of who they are… or more precisely: who they want Stella to believe they are and who they really are. And it’s already a hell of a ride! And they’re never irritating, which is kind of a miracle.

Life Sentence is funny. But discreetly. Without a red light warning sign saying “Be ready, we’re gonna be funny in 3,2,1…”. It’s funny because the characters are -and hopefully the actors too- because the dialogues are sharp and smart, and probably because the writers and the producers wrote for comedies before. It shows. It’s touching without being cheesy, especially thanks to the heroine’s voice-over that could be compared to the narrator’s in Jane The Virgin, though she’s not breaking the fourth wall. And it has potential to go on for years. As long as the characters are good, and I don’t want to repeat myself but they are, everything’s gonna be fine. You want to know their secrets? Here’s one [SPOILER ALERT!]: Ida wants to divorce Paul for years. And you know why? Because she doesn’t love him anymore, yes. But mostly because she’s in love with a woman. And this woman is… Poppy! It is this type of show. The situations can be far-fetched, there’s too much going on, but the emotions feel real.

Life Sentence is a delightful, funny, soapy, certainly not preachy, breath of fresh air, that may not be as inventive as Jane The Virgin and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend are, but there’s a lot to like in there, especially for those who want more family dramedies on TV. Can it be a huge success for The CW? Probably not. Can it win awards? I doubt it. Can it charm the hell out of the audience? Oh yeah, it will!

EXCLUSIVE: Freeform (aka ABC Family) orders “Pretty Little Liars” creator/Bella Thorne pilot

bella-thorne-neutrogena-egerie-marque

 

After ordering a script last march, ABC Family now called Freeform is moving forward with the new project from Pretty Little Liars creator with a pilot order.

Famous in Love, written by I. Marlene King and adapted from Rebecca Serle’s book, is a romantic soap about a college student plucked from obscurity to star in a major Hollywood movie franchise opposite of one of Hollywood’s hottest movie stars. She then struggles with her new-found fame… The heroine will be played by Disney’s Bella Thorne, seen in the series Scream last summer. Miguel Arteta (The Carrie Diaries) will direct the pilot this december in Los Angeles, for Warner Horizon Television, Farah Films & Management.

 

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