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December 9, 2015   •  Category: "Big Little Lies", Pacific Standard0 Comments

Laura Dern Boards HBO’s Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman Drama

Jean-Marc Vallee will direct multiple episodes of the David E. Kelley limited series co-starring Shailene Woodley and Adam Scott.

HBO’s Big Little Lies continues to add to its impressive cast.

Enlightened alum Laura Dern is returning to the premium cable network with a co-starring role in limited series Big Little Lies, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. The casting also marks a Wild reunion for Dern with star/EP Reese Witherspoon.

From David E. Kelley, the comedic drama centers on three mothers (Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman and Shailene Woodley) of kindergartners whose apparently perfect lives unravel to the point of murder. Dern will take on the role of Renata Klein, a powerful career woman and anti-bullying crusader who is at the center of schoolyard politics on and off the playground. Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation) also co-stars as Witherspoon’s husband.

Based on Liane Moriarty’s book of the same name, the drama hails from David E. Kelley (Boston Legal, Ally McBeal) who is writing the limited series. HBO landed the project in May following a bidding war with Netflix.

Kidman and her Blossom Films banner, as well as Witherspoon and her Pacific Standard shingle, optioned the rights to the twisty thriller/soap and No. 1 New York Times best-seller, which was published in July, as a potential feature film before refocusing the drama for television. Jean-Marc Vallee (Dallas Buyers Club) will direct multiple episodes of the series.

Kelley, who most recently served as showrunner on CBS’ Robin Williams-Sarah Michelle Gellar comedy The Crazy Ones, is attached to pen the series via his David E. Kelley Productions banner. Kidman and Witherspoon will both exec produce alongside Kelley. Exec producers include Kelley, Witherspoon and Pacific Standard’s Bruna Papandrea, Kidman and Blossom Films’ Per Saari. Australian novelist Moriarty will serve as a producer on Big Little Lies. She previously penned best-sellers What Alice Forgot, Three Wishes, The Hypnotist’s Love Story and The Husband’s Secret.

For Dern, the casting brings her back into the HBO fold following her starring role in the premium cable network’s critical darling Enlightened, which was canceled after two seasons. The actress-producer is also teaming with Bridesmaids’ Annie Mumolo for an untitled saleswoman drama in the works at HBO. Additionally, Dern and Witherspoon are teaming with Wild author Cheryl Strayed for Tiny Beautiful Things, which is also in the works at HBO.

Dern is repped by CAA, Untitled and Gang Tyre.

THR

Shailene Woodley joins Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon in HBO’s Big Little Lies

Divergent star Shailene Woodley is joining forces with Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon on HBO.

Woodley will star opposite the two women in Big Little Lies, an adaptation of the Liane Moriarty book of the same name, a “surburban noir” tale focusing on a trio of mothers of kindergarten students in a quaint Australian town who are tied together by friendship, secrets, and murder.

Kidman revealed the news at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit, though HBO, which landed the project earlier this year, is not confirming the deal. She is serving as executive producer of the limited series alongside Witherspoon and Picket Fences/Ally McBeal creator David E. Kelley (who is serving as its writer). The book was a New York Times best seller, and with the star wattage now in front of and behind the camera, Big Little Lies will be one of the TV’s most anticipated upcoming series, limited or otherwise.

Woodley, who starred on the small screen in The Secret Life of the American Teenager, will be back on the big screen in 2016’s The Divergent Series: Allegiant and Snowden.

EW

Adam Scott to Co-Star in HBO’s Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman Drama

Adam Scott is expanding his relationship with HBO.

The Parks and Recreation alum has been tapped to co-star in limited series Big Little Lies, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

From David E. Kelley, the comedic drama centers on three mothers (Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman and Shailene Woodley) of kindergartners whose apparently perfect lives unravel to the point of murder. Scott will play Ed Mackenzie, the stable and loving husband to Madeline (Witherspoon) whose approach is to play it safe.

Based on Liane Moriarty’s book of the same name, the drama hails from David E. Kelley (Boston Legal, Ally McBeal) who is writing the limited series. HBO landed the project in May following a bidding war with Netflix.

Kidman and her Blossom Films banner, as well as Withersppon and her Pacific Standard shingle, optioned the rights to the twisty thriller/soap and No. 1 New York Times best-seller, which was published in July, as a potential feature film before refocusing the drama for television.

Kelley, who most recently served as showrunner on CBS’ Robin Williams-Sarah Michelle Gellar comedy The Crazy Ones, is attached to pen the series via his David E. Kelley Productions banner. Kidman and Witherspoon will both exec produce alongside Kelley. Exec producers include Kelley, Witherspoon and Pacific Standard’s Bruna Papandrea, Kidman and Blossom Films’ Per Saari. Australian novelist Moriarty will serve as a producer on Big Little Lies. She previously penned best-sellers What Alice Forgot, Three Wishes, The Hypnotist’s Love Story and The Husband’s Secret.

Big Little Lies expands Scott’s relationship with HBO, where the actor-producer and his wife, Naomi, set up comedy Deep S.I.X. via their Universal Television-based Gettin’ Rad production company.

The HBO comedy marked the latest sale for Gettin’ Rad, which also is prepping Donuthead and Buds for NBC. The company also is behind indie feature The Overnight, which bowed in the summer. They’re in post on their second feature, Other People, which will open at Sundance. On the acting side, Scott stars in Universal and Legendary’s Krampus and wrapped production on My Blind Brother. Scott is repped by WME, Rise Management and attorney Wendy Heller.

THR

‘Paranormal Activity 4’s’ Kathryn Newton Joins Reese Witherspoon in HBO’s ‘Big Little Lies’

The rising young actress will play Witherspoon’s daughter in the limited series from director Jean-Marc Vallee

“Paranormal Activity 4” star Kathryn Newton is set to play Reese Witherspoon‘s daughter in HBO’s limited series “Big Little Lies,” TheWrap has learned.

Nicole Kidman and Shailene Woodley also star in the project, which is based on Liane Moriarty‘s bestselling book of the same name. Jean-Marc Vallee is directing, having previously worked with Witherspoon on “Wild.”

David E. Kelley wrote the script, which follows three mothers of kindergarteners whose seemingly perfect lives unravel to the point of murder.

Witherspoon and Kidman are executive producing “Big Little Lies” under their respective production companies, Pacific Standard (with Bruna Papandrea) and Blossom Films (with Per Saari). Kelley also serves as an executive producer, while author Moriarty is also involved on the producing side along with Vallee’s frequent collaborator Nathan Ross.

Newton starred on the Jay Mohr sitcom “Gary Unmarried” before landing the lead in “Paranormal Activity 4.” She went on to guest star on “Mad Men” and recur on the CW’s “Supernatural,” as well as appear in Sony’s hit Cameron Diaz comedy “Bad Teacher.” The rising starlet will soon be seen in Fox Digital Studios’ comedy “Mono,” and “Big Little Lies” will no doubt open more doors for her down the line.

Newton is represented by Innovative Artists.

The Wrap



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