With soap stars Eileen Davidson (Ashley Abbott, “The Young and the Restless”; Kristen DiMera, “Days of our Lives”) and Lisa Rinna (ex-Billie Reed, “DAYS”; ex-Taylor McBride, “Melrose Place”) currently filming the fifth season of Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” it was only a matter of time before a network greenlit a new reality series/docu-series comprised solely of the divas of daytime and primetime soap operas.
As it gets ready to rebrand itself from TVGN (TV Guide Network) to POP beginning in 2015, Brad Schwartz, President, Entertainment and Media, POP, announced today that the network has opted to move forward with its previously titled “Soap Town” project, now titled “Queens of Drama” (working title), with Lindsay Hartley (“All My Children,” “Days of Our Lives,” “Passions”), Crystal Hunt (“Guiding Light,” “One Life to Live”), Vanessa Marcil (“Beverly Hills, 90210,” “General Hospital”), Chrystee Pharris (“Passions,” “General Hospital”) and Hunter Tylo (“The Bold and The Beautiful”) leading the cast. Donna Mills (“General Hospital,” “Knots Landing,” “Melrose Place”) will also be taking part with special appearances.
“Queens of Drama” is a new docu-series from the producers of “Hatfields & McCoys” and “Gene Simmons Family Jewels,” which follows a group of former daytime and primetime soap stars as they attempt to produce a new primetime serialized drama to star in. The ladies will be required to work together in front of and behind the cameras as they develop, pitch, and produce their steamy series with the hopes of landing a pilot deal by the end of the season.
In addition to “Queens of Drama,” other announced original series currently in development include: “Sing It On,” a real-life “Pitch Perfect” with steeper competition and higher stakes, and “Street Magic,” a series taking viewers into the world of underground street magicians as they perform for fans, including the stars of film and television.
“We couldn’t be more excited to announce our first wave of original programming that will launch POP to the world in the new year,” said Schwartz. “Our slate is filled with fun, fan-driven content featuring big stars and rising talent, as well as an optimistic spirit that celebrates audience passion.”
POP will premiere more than 400 hours of fan-fueled original programming next year, including six new original series, an exclusive after-show, live red carpet specials during the awards season, and a curated lineup of television fan-favorites. Launching in early 2015, POP will provide viewers with a multi-platform destination that creates content around the things popping in fan culture.
The new series will join POP’s previously announced original programs premiering in 2015, including: “Rock This Boat: New Kids on the Block,” “The Story Behind,” “Big Brother After Dark,” and live red carpet specials at the Oscars and Grammys. The network also announced “Unusually Thicke,” a reality sitcom starring Alan Thicke, his family and famous friends, has been picked up for a second season.
Outside of its original programming, POP will feature second-run episodes of “Jericho,” “90210” (CW version), “Beverly Hills, 90210” (FOX version), “Melrose Place,” “Survivor,” “The Amazing Race” and “Big Brother.”