“Studio City has actually been in the works for quite a while,” he said. “More than ten years ago I began writing a show about an aging soap star who has a great life but feels disillusioned and wants more. Little did I know that years later that would serve as the embryo for Studio City.”
“I was very fortunate to encounter some very special people along the way who have made this into a reality. My co-creator Jason Antognoli and I partnered with executive producer, Brian Levine. We worked together developing the early script and refining the characters. The next phase partnered us with our producing partner, Timothy Woodward, Jr. who is a gifted director, producer, and a consummate perfectionist.”
The series, which spans six episodes, was directed by Timothy Woodward Jr., who also served as one of the executive producers. “He directed all six episodes of Studio City. He and I have worked on several films together previously including the recently released feature, ‘Beyond the Law.’ My wife, Michele Kanan also served as a triple threat, producing, writing and casting the show. We are all so proud of the project. Daytime has been an integral part of my life and I wanted to create a show that is effectively a ‘love letter to the soaps’ while showing, sometimes in a comedic light and sometimes with profound drama, what it is like living the life of an actor on a soap opera,” he said.
“First and foremost, I want our audience to be entertained and develop a connection with the characters,” he said. “I would like them to feel that while my character Sam Steven/Dr. Pierce Hartley has a very unique job as a star in a daytime show, he also deals with many of the same problems everyone has. Not all that glitters is gold. He deals with a demanding boss, a competitive work environment and family issues.”
In Studio City, soap worlds collide in this stirring new digital drama. The all-star cast includes such esteemed actors as Sean Kanan as Sam Stevens, Carolyn Hennesy (as soap opera producer Gloria), Sarah Brown, Patrika Darbo, Tristan Rogers, and Scott Turner Schofield; moreover, actors Michael James Lazar, Philip Bruenn, Erin Michele Soto, Melissa Riso, and newcomer Juliet Vega also star. “I am so proud of the outstanding cast we have assembled. I excited for fans to see some of their favorite daytime actors in roles that are light years away from the parts they play on soaps,” Kanan said.
Studio City follows Sam’s journey and the cast of fictional show-within-a-show, Hearts on Fire, which is America’s No. 2 daytime drama. The different characters navigate their own messy personal lives while working in the parallel universe of soap operas. This show illustrates how life often imitates art, especially in the daytime world since they are the longest-running shows in the entertainment business.
On his plans for 2020, he said, “I believe 2020 is going to be an epic year. I plan on Studio City reaching an even larger audience while continuing to create poignant stories told in a compelling, sometimes funny and always binge-worthy way.”
A dynamic husband and wife writing duo, Michele and Sean Kanan joined by Lauren de Normandie, to draft the heavy-hitting episodes which explore such issues as #MeToo and LGBTQ with just enough frivolity to keep the storylines moving and the audiences engaged. The Studio City writing team includes Timothy Woodward, Jr. and Jason Antognoli.
“Having the opportunity to watch something that started as an idea and evolved into a finished product is truly rewarding,” he said. “Working with my wife, Michele is always fantastic. She serves as a writer, producer and casting director for the show. Working with good friends is always fun. From our showrunner Timothy Woodward jr. who directed all of the episodes to our cast and crew it has been a great experience. In addition, I am really proud that the show addresses some very timely issues including #MeToo and has an LGBTQ storyline.”
“Studio City revolves around the life of an actor on a soap nut is not solely for soap fans. The show has a big heart and will hopefully appeal to a wide and diverse audience,” Kanan concluded.
For more information on Studio City, check out its official website.
Read More: Digital Journal’s Markos Papadatos chatted with Sean Kanan about his Success Factor X book.