Earlier in the week, Reese attended the launch of her new AT&T/Hello Sunshine channel show Shine On With Reese. She looked chic and pretty in a black and white lace Monique Lhuillier dress, with Jennifer Meyer jewellry. Reese talked about her motivation for the series being to support and encourage other women, as well as believing that changing the storytellers will change the stories we see out there. Reese mentioned that she’s been having meetings about the upcoming Legally Blonde 3, but she wouldn’t reveal any storyline secrets! She also took a toy ice cream on the red carpet with her, to reenact paparazzi photos taken of her throwing an ice cream at Meryl Streep on the set of Big Little Lies!
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Reese Witherspoon Says Her New VOD Channel Is Dedicated to ‘Female Storytelling’
Reese Witherspoon really is sunshine personified.
The Oscar winner was all smiles and full of energy Monday night at the launch of her media company Hello Sunshine’s new AT&T Video on Demand channel on DirectTV and DirectTV Now.
“You guys, I cannot believe it,” Witherspoon said on stage at NeueHouse Hollywood. “It’s so amazing to think that a year ago we were talking about this project and here we are with all of you and it’s actually happening. I turned on the TV the other day and there was a banner that had my face on it and it was like, ‘channel 1-1-1-2.’ I was like, ‘Oh my God, this is really happening. This is so exciting.’”
The new VOD channel programming includes “Shine On with Reese,” a weekly series in which Witherspoon interviews other remarkable women. Guests include Dolly Parton, Ava DuVernay, Pink, poet Cleo Wade, journalist Elaine Welterworth, Sprinkles founder Candace Nelson, author and activist Glennon Doyle and her wife, Olympic gold medal soccer player Abby Wambach and Simone Askew, the first female First Captain at West Point.
“I said, ‘I really want to shine a light on other women,’” Witherspoon said. “We kind of talked about this idea of one person shining a light on someone and that person shining a light on someone else and creating this kind of collective glow.”
Another series is “Master the Mess,” a decluttering makeover show hosted by professional organizers Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin. “They’re from The Home Edit and if you don’t follow them on Instagram, you should,” Witherspoon said. “They go in and just do incredible work and they transform people’s lives by cleaning out their lives — literally, emotionally and physically. They’re [also] hysterically funny.”
Also in attendance were 20 girls from the AT&T Hello Sunshine Filmmaker Lab, an eight-day filmmaker immersion program in Los Angeles.
“I want to thank everyone at AT&T for making this possible because when I pitched this idea of creating a channel that focused on female storytelling, they were all in — chips on the table,” the “Big Little Lies” star said. “They just got it immediately and have given us all their resources and time and attention and that’s what it takes to make something like this successful.”
Reese Witherspoon on Nailing Meryl Streep with an Ice Cream Cone: “I Felt Really Good About It”
The next edition of HBO’s Big Little Lies will get down and dirty. While filming a scene from Season 2 in Los Angeles on July 31, Reese Witherspoon was photographed furiously throwing an ice cream cone straight at new cast member Meryl Streep.
“This ice cream story has really taken over. It’s actually really funny,” said Witherspoon at the premiere of her new television series, Shine on with Reese, in Los Angeles on Monday at NeueHouse. “I’ve seen a couple of the memes. It’s hard to choose a favorite—they all made me laugh!”
Memes aside, fans are still preoccupied with one burning question: did Witherspoon actually hit Streep?
“I did! I nailed her, and I felt really good about it,” the Oscar winner revealed with a big laugh. “Once you watch the show, you’ll understand why I did it. You’ll be happy, too. It’s one of those moments when you got to do it, even if it’s Meryl Streep.”
It’s no joke that Witherspoon has excellent aim and a powerful throwing arm. She spent four months being trained by Sue Enquist, a national-champion coach from U.C.L.A., while preparing to play a softball star in James L. Brooks’s 2010 romantic comedy, How Do You Know.
“I practiced really hard. I did the wind-up, and I made sure to have proper mechanics and really focused on my target,” Witherspoon joked of her technique in pelting Streep. “And I got her. My softball skills paid off.”
Viewers won’t know exactly why Witherspoon’s character angrily ends up in an ice cream showdown with Streep until new episodes of Big Little Lies debut sometime in 2019. In the meantime, fans can watch Witherspoon in her first unscripted TV series, Shine on with Reese, which celebrates inspiring women who have created their own paths to success.
The series is the centerpiece of Witherspoon’s new cable channel, the Hello Sunshine Channel on AT&T’s DirecTV. The half-hour show features Witherspoon interviewing trailblazers such as Dolly Parton, Spanx founder Sara Blakely, director Ava DuVernay, singer Pink, and Simone Askew, the first black woman named West Point’s First Captain. Through her new show and channel, Witherspoon’s mission is to tell empowering, female-driven stories.
“The show showcases different talented women across the country who are doing really cool things in their own environments and changing people’s lives,” said the actress-mogul. “I hope people will take away the idea that women inspire and lift each other up by simply telling their stories. It’s really about shining a light on women and talking about their unique experiences and then another person shining a light on someone else. We can learn so much and support each other by doing that, and that’s really the center of the show.”
Reese Witherspoon Talks Making Series “for Our Girls” and Throwing Ice Cream at Meryl Streep
The actress discussed the direction of her Hello Sunshine shingle, as well as a viral ‘Big Little Lies 2’ image, at the premiere party for her AT&T series ‘Shine On With Reese.’
Though her latest show’s title refers to her only by her first name, Reese Witherspoon says she’s not trying to join the ranks of one-name celebrities like Beyonce, Cher and Madonna.
At the premiere party for her new AT&T interview series Shine On With Reese, the actress explained to The Hollywood Reporter, “It just takes a long time to write ‘Witherspoon!’ It eats up most of the billboard, and it’s just a big ol’ last name!” (Shine On is available on Hello Sunshine Video On Demand channel, featuring fare from Witherspoon’s production company of the same name.)
The intimate moniker, however, is also in keeping with the tone of the new series, in which Witherspoon serves as a host and interviewer who profiles extraordinary women of all ages and backgrounds. At the Shine On premiere event at NeueHouse Hollywood, Witherspoon revealed two episodes: one focused on the famed pop singer P!nk, and another on Simone Askew, a current student of U.S. military academy West Point.
Despite a long history of stepping into various roles onscreen, Witherspoon admitted she had some initial trepidation about becoming the show’s interviewer. However, she said she quickly found some comfortable footing.
“I feel like I learned to be even more inquisitive than I already am: to do a lot of research, to watch every YouTube video, read every article, because you never know where that little gem of a story is hiding,” she said. “And then just be a really good listener.”
Witherspoon also relished the opportunity to get a taste of the lives her subjects lead, even if it meant setting what she described as her inherently cautious nature aside and try out the silk acrobatics that Pink performs during her live shows.
“I loved getting my hands messy,” said Witherspoon. “I did a whole episode where we were cooking cupcakes and we did one where I was making pizza and that was really fun, just sort of getting in the kitchen and making a mess. Turns out I don’t have a culinary career [in store].”
Still, her ability to effectively — and accurately, she revealed — hurl ice cream in the direction of Meryl Streep, as revealed in a recent Instagram shot taken from the duo filming a scene of the new season of Big Little Lies, was the hot topic among her interviewers on the red carpet. THR inquired as to whether Streep gave as good as she got in the ice-cream tossing department. “No, but she might — we’re not done shooting!” Witherspoon replied.
“Everyone knows who Reese is — now everyone’s going to know her for much more than just being an actress,” said Nashville-based decluttering guru Clea Shearer, who, with partner Joanna Teplin, headlines another upcoming series that will bow on Hello Sunshine’s VOD channel next month: Master the Mess. “She’s an entrepreneur, a powerhouse — and I mean, she has her own channel. I think that [Hello Sunshine’s] whole purpose for this was about female storytelling and we have our stories and we have the way we are. They didn’t try and reconstruct us to be anything different. Thank goodness, because I don’t know if we could do that.”
Another of the Shine On profilees, retired soccer player Abby Wambach, revealed how impressed she was with Witherspoon’s willingness to step away from her acting and producing duties to shed light on the stories and struggles of other women.
“She doesn’t have to do any of this, right? She doesn’t have to work,” said Wambach. “But she’s choosing to dedicate her time and money to building something that can sustain, that can probably sustain past her own life and maybe support her children in their lives and whatever they would choose to do. And of course, the most amazing by-product of that is that she wants to do it while lifting other women up.”
For Witherspoon, ramping up the output at Hello Sunshine and opening up fresh narrative points of view (projects in development include an Apple TV series with Jennifer Aniston set in the world of morning news anchors, an adaptation of author Celeste Ng’s Little Fires Everywhere for Hulu and a Legally Blonde sequel for the big screen, among others) has become something of a mission, she emphasized.
“It’s been great — I put together this incredible team: I’m working with some of the greatest people who work in digital and television and film and they’re all so passionate about telling women’s stories from different points of views,” she said. “So we really feel like if we can change the storytellers, we can change the stories that people are seeing out there. We do it for ourselves, we do it for our girls, we do it for the next generation and we’re having a blast.”
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