Truth Be Told is a new crime-drama series for AppleTV+ that Reese executive produced through Hello Sunshine. Below is an interview with some of the other producers about how the show was developed – there is only a brief mention of Reese, but still an interesting look at the work put in.
‘Truth Be Told’: How the Apple TV+ Drama Came to Be, From Pitch to Screen
In Apple TV+’s “Truth Be Told,” Octavia Spencer plays Poppy Parnell, a true-crime podcaster who is compelled to reopen the murder case that made her a national sensation and comes face to face with the man she may have mistakenly helped to put behind bars. Relitigating the murder case via her podcast, Parnell contends with nearly 20 years of family secrets, deceit, and the San Francisco Bay Area’s powerful in order to get to the truth.
The series, which is created by Nichelle Tramble Spellman (“The Good Wife”) and premieres today, came about after general conversations on the value of true crime between executive producers Jenno Topping, Reese Witherspoon and Lauren Neustadter. Witherspoon recommended that Topping and Neustadter consider Kathleen Barber’s 2017 novel, “Are You Sleeping.”
“We read it and loved it, and especially loved its potential in terms of an adaptation,” Topping said. “Lauren then got involved as well. We had just done ‘Hidden Figures’ with Octavia, and together we found Nichelle and it just became a happy party.”
Besides the novel, Bay Area native Spellman’s attraction to the project started with the opportunity to explore the phenomena of podcasting and revisiting criminal cases. She also relished the idea of setting a series in the city where she was born and raised. The original story was set in Illinois, a state unfamiliar to Spellman.
“I’m a Bay Area girl, and I really wanted to show the diversity that I remembered,” she said. “Much of what I was fond of has kind of disappeared, or been altered after all the money that came in from Silicon Valley spread through San Francisco and then into the East Bay. So the series is a little bit of a love letter to how things used to be.”
‘From Book To Script To Screen,’ Reese Witherspoon Is Making Roles For Women
Actor Reese Witherspoon became famous in her 20s after starring in films like Election and Legally Blonde, but by the time she entered her 30s, the film landscape had shifted. DVD sales had shrunk and smaller, female-centered movies were in short supply. It was nearly impossible to find good leading roles for women.
Witherspoon began asking different movie studios what projects they were developing for women. “With the exclusion of one studio, everybody said ‘Nothing. Nothing with a female lead,’ ” she says.
So Witherspoon decided to start a production company and began adapting books with complex female characters into films and TV shows. The idea was to create better parts for women — and to help female authors get their stories sold.
Witherspoon’s company spearheaded the adaptation of Gone Girl, Wild and Big Little Lies, among other titles. Looking back, Witherspoon describes her shift into producing as “betting on myself.”
Reese appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon earlier in the week, as part of her promotion for The Morning Show. She chatted about Big Little Lies, why she started producing, TikTok and The Morning Show. She also took part in a game of ‘Can You Feel It’, which was hilarious! She wore a black dress by Andrew Gn, with Wolford tights and YSL heels. Reese was at her most charming and funny, and it’s a must watch appearance!!
Find stills and screencaptures in our Gallery, and videos below:
Reese Witherspoon to Receive Sherry Lansing Award at Hollywood Reporter Women in Entertainment Event
Reese Witherspoon will receive the prestigious Sherry Lansing Leadership Award at The Hollywood Reporter’s annual Women in Entertainment gala, set to take place Dec. 11 in Los Angeles.
The Oscar, Golden Globe and Emmy winner will be joined by best-selling author, entrepreneur and political activist Stacey Abrams, who will deliver the keynote speech at the breakfast, which is attended by 600 of the leading women in the entertainment industry.
Also speaking will be Oscar- and Golden Globe-winning actress and producer Charlize Theron, who’ll help present $1 million in university scholarships to high-school seniors from underserved communities across Los Angeles, all of whom have taken part in THR’s acclaimed Women in Entertainment Mentorship Program.
The gala coincides with the release of THR’s much-anticipated annual Women in Entertainment issue of the magazine (on newsstands Dec. 11), which highlights the Power 100, the leading female executives in entertainment. This year, the issue is guest-edited by actress, director, producer and activist Olivia Wilde, who will also attend the star-studded event.
Witherspoon is the latest recipient of the Lansing Award, which recognizes trailblazers and philanthropists and was established in honor of the former CEO of Paramount Pictures (the first woman to head a Hollywood studio). Previous recipients include Viola Davis, Jennifer Lawrence, Tina Fey, Barbra Streisand, Shonda Rhimes, Oprah Winfrey, Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Helen Mirren, Meryl Streep, Halle Berry, Jodie Foster, Glenn Close and Barbara Walters.
“Reese has transformed herself from acclaimed actress to one of Hollywood’s most prolific producers. She is a perfect fit to carry on the legacy of trailblazing women by receiving the Sherry Lansing Award,” THR editorial director Matthew Belloni said. “I’m delighted that this year we’ll also have Stacey Abrams — one of the most impressive and transformative figures in the country — to deliver our keynote speech. They are fitting company to the multitalented Olivia Wilde, who’s proved how gifted she is not just as the director of this year’s Booksmart, but also as guest editor of our upcoming magazine.”
One of the many films Reese and Hello Sunshine have been working on producing is Lucy In The Sky, a sci-fi drama directed by Noah Hawley and starring Natalie Portman and Jon Hamm. The two stars of the film talked about Reese’s involvement as producer in a new interview with Entertainment Weekly:
Natalie Portman, Jon Hamm talk Lucy in the Sky, astronaut love, and interstellar f—kboys Fresh from the film’s Toronto International Film Festival debut, the stars talk about their cosmic attraction at the center Noah Hawley’s bonkers drama ‘Lucy in the Sky’
Some romances are written in the stars; others are written because of the stars, as is the case for Natalie Portman and Jon Hamm‘s otherworldly obsession in the upcoming Reese Witherspoon-produced movie Lucy in the Sky.
Inspired by real-life astronaut Lisa Nowak’s mental unraveling after she manned the space shuttle Discovery’s STS-121 mission in July 2006, Legion creator Noah Hawley crafted a sci-fi-tinged psychological journey into the damaging effects of one astronaut’s life-altering voyage that triggered a violent episode of near-fatal attraction. The film follows Portman as Lucy Cola, a star-gazing space-traveler who, after returning to earth from a lengthy mission beyond the atmosphere, has a steamy affair with her mysterious coworker, Mark (Hamm), who thrusts her world into a state of philosophical chaos. Still, as Lucy’s grip on reality loosens, her feelings for Mark intensify, leading to the film’s increasingly trippy exploration of a cosmic alignment of two disparate hearts (that ultimately leads to an epic conclusion too bonkers to spoil here).
Also starring Dan Stevens, Ellen Burstyn, Zazie Beetz, Colman Domingo, Tig Notaro, and Nick Offerman, Lucy in the Sky rockets into theaters on Oct. 4. Ahead of the film’s release, which follows its world premiere at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival, read on for EW’s full conversation with Portman and Hamm, in which they discuss their characters’ zany chemistry and Witherspoon’s impact as a producer.
What were Reese Witherspoon’s contributions like as a producer? PORTMAN: Reese is an amazing person and an amazingly involved producer. She wasn’t on set because she was filming her show at the same time, but our script was the product of her input, ideas, and notes when she was developing it, and also in the post process, she was involved in watching and talking about it with us and Noah. She’s so sharp, smart, and generous. She’s been like a real sister and role model just for that, being able to do everything and be kind and generous while creating work for hundreds of other people.
Reese Witherspoon Sets Home-Organizing Series at Netflix
Netflix is doing a little more tidying up.
Eight months after Tidying Up With Marie Kondo debuted on the streamer, it has ordered another home-organization series that counts Reese Witherspoon and Molly Sims among its executive producers.
The as-yet untitled, eight-episode show will feature Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin, who founded design-centric home-organization company The Home Edit and have parlayed their success into a best-selling book and now the Netflix series. Each hourlong episode will take on two organization projects shaped by Shearer and Teplin’s unique sense of form-meets-function.
Subjects in the series will be a mix of everyday families and celebrity clients.
Sims and Witherspoon previously worked with Shearer and Teplin on a series called Master the Mess, which aired on DirecTV in 2018. They are executive producing the Netflix show with Charlotte Koh and Cynthia Stockhammer of Witherspoon’s company, Hello Sunshine; Critical Content’s Tom Forman, Jenny Daly and Jon Beyer; and showrunner Tess Gamboa Meyers, a veteran of Project Runway and Little Women: NY.
The series will join a roster of unscripted shows on Netflix that also includes Queer Eye, Nailed It!, The Chef Show, Selling Sunset, The Final Table and Street Food, among numerous others.
Studios are bidding on Pyros, an intriguing package that has Reese Witherspoon attached to star in a sci-fi film she will produce with Simon Kinberg. The film will be written by Thomas Pierce, who is adapting his short story Tardy Man, which published last year in The New Yorker. Pierce has done well with this strategy: his short story Chairman Spaceman was bought and is being developed by Fox Searchlight. Kinberg is producing that one as well.
Hello Sunshine’s Witherspoon and Lauren Neustadter are producing with Genre Films’ Audrey Chon.
Tardy Man deals with a group of augmented people who are fitted with indestructible fire suits that are fused to their spines. They work for a corporation that recovers objects for wealthy people when their houses are burning. It is strictly forbidden for them to veer from their salvage missions, even when other humans are in danger. The protagonist decides to make an exception to this rule and that is the jumping off point.
I’m told that numerous offers are on the table. This is one of the high profile star packages currently drawing bids; the other is Don’t Worry Darling, a genre spec script that Booksmart‘s Olivia Wilde will direct and star in.
CAA is in the middle of both auctions, which are expected to sort themselves by next week. Witherspoon is managed by LBI and the writer by Kaplan/Perrone.
Following on from our previous 2014 TV appearance update, we have an even bigger one for you this weekend! Over 6,000 photos & screencaptures from Reese’s TV appearances in 2015 have been added to our Gallery in the last few weeks. Reese started off the year with a couple of appearances to promote Wild during awards season, then promoted Hot Pursuit, and within that did some promotion for Draper James. She and Sofia Vergara also did the rounds of various Mexican talk shows which was fun to watch.
We’ve also added a few sets of screencaptures from some online interviews released this year. The Fandango interview is particularly great – Reese and the interviewer watch a scene from Wild and talk through it in depth.
I loved Reese’s interviews this year and she looked amazing! There are so many fabulous photos to browse through in this update, including rare photos from the Mexican TV shows. My favourites are the Despierta America, Good Morning America and Live With Kelly & Michael photos Many of the interviews are posted further down this post for you to watch, and enjoy browsing through the screencaptures in the Gallery:
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