After writing the first six chapters of So Beautiful it Hurts: The Making of My So-Called Life, I’m struck by something I probably should’ve seen coming: reconstructing the production of this show is turning out to be a lot like asking people what their high school experiences were like. What those involved remember happening and how they frame those memories tells you more about them and how they’ve adjusted to one of the most profound experiences of their lives than it does about the show itself: the actor who grew up with a mother like Rayanne’s, the director who wrestled with Jordan’s dyslexia as a child – the list goes on. And I think that makes those creative personalities all the more endearing and fascinating because of it.
It reminds me of something Devon Odessa (Sharon) told me – words that I’ve come back to again and again ever since. She was describing how creator Winnie Holzman, as well as the executive producers and the crew, all made the young cast feel comfortable enough to open up and allow their emotions to shine through – to be vulnerable. “We all felt so safe. We were like ‘Yeah, OK, sure, let’s do this!’”
So....what has been covered in the book so far?
The early years of creator Winnie Holzman and executive producers Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz.
The trio’s work on Thirtysomething, as well as that program’s end.
The birth of the idea for My So-Called Life
Its initial development as a half-hour show.
Two very unusual paths that half-hour pilot took.
With this back story firmly in place, I’m now really looking forward to diving into the heart of the story – the creation of the My So-Called Life with which so many fell in love.
Thank you for coming along for the ride,
So Beautiful it Hurts’ is neither endorsed by nor affiliated with ABC, The Bedford Falls Co.,or anyone involved with the making or distribution of “My So-Called Life.”