Cruel Summer, a psychological mystery series from Jessica Biel, premieres on Freeform April 20. The thriller follows two young women: Kate is a popular girl with a seemingly charmed life, and Jeanette is a nerdy wannabe who is accused of being connected to Kate’s disappearance.
Set over three summers and told through shifting points of view, “the series challenges perception and follows how one girl can go from being a sweet outlier to the most despised person in America,” according to Freeform.
Olivia Holt, Chiara Aurelia, Michael Landes, Froy Gutierrez, Harley Quinn Smith, Allius Barnes, Blake Lee and Brooklyn Sudano are in the cast.
Bert V. Royal created the show and Tia Napolitano is the showrunner. Both are executive producers, along with Biel of Iron Ocean Productions and Michelle Purple. Max Winkler directs and executive produces the pilot.
Biel got her start in the cast of 7th Heaven. Her film work includes Total Recall and The Rules of Attraction. She executive produces The Sinner on USA.
Studio eOne produces Cruel Summer.
B+C/Multichannel News said of Cruel Summer, “Viewers will have to stay engaged as the eight-episode storyline travels quickly back and forth across the three years, but it’s worth the investment to see how Cruel Summer shrouds a fascinating mystery within the many facets and dimensions of teen life.”
Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.
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