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Reckless to Premiere on CBS Tonight, is Likened to Big Brother

 

"Reckless" is set to premiere at 9 pm tonight.
“Reckless” is set to premiere at 9 pm tonight.

“Reckless,” which creator Dana Stevens said was inspired by a combination of years of “watching people do reckless things that essentially ruined their lives,” and dating a Southern city attorney, premieres at 9 p.m. tonight on CBS.

“Anthony Weiner, General (David) Petraeus, everybody seems to be willing to tweet or video almost anything they do and take a risk, thinking it won’t affect their lives,” Stevens said referring to the former New York Democratic congressman who resigned because a sexting scandal and the retired Army general who resigned as director of the CIA, citing his extramarital affair.

Another inspiration came from dating a North Carolina city attorney, Stevens said.

“I was completely inspired by his work because he represents firemen and policemen and (the) local drama that happens in his town,” Stevens said.

Stevens’ boyfriend also led “Reckless” to be set in Charleston, South Carolina, she said.

“I was blown away by how different it is,” said Stevens, who also created the 2006-2007 ABC comedy-drama “What About Brian” and wrote the screenplays for the films “Safe Haven,” “City of Angels,” “For Love of the Game,” “Blink” and “Life or Something Like It.”

In an attempt to ensure realism, Stevens said “papered my room with maps of Charleston” and went there “quite a few times,” seeking to learn where people lived and went to eat, what the city looked like and its “vibe,” before completing the script for the pilot.

“I really do tend to like to write about places where I don’t live because I like to spend time fantasizing about what it would be like to live there,” said Stevens, who was raised in Phoenix and graduated from Palm Springs High School and UCLA. “It’s fun as a writer to inhabit a world that isn’t your everyday world.”

The recklessness in the series stems from two couples.

Roy Rayder (Cam Gigandet) and Jamie Sawyer (Anna Wood) have “a strong attraction to each other but they cannot act on that attraction because they are opposing counsel in a very big case,” Stevens said.

Lee Anne Marcus (Georgina Haig) and Terry McCandless (Shawn Hatosy) are co-workers in the Charleston Police Department “who go as far as they can go in every way,” Stevens said.

The cast also includes Adam Rodriguez, who plays a detective and Sawyer’s boyfriend; Gregory Harrison as Rayder’s politically influential former father-in-law; and Kim Wayans as Sawyer’s paralegal, an expert at digging up case-winning information.

“This is a multi-franchise show,” Stevens said. “It’s about cops and lawyers and we always say the linchpin is sex.”

Each of the 13 episodes of  “Reckless” will include a “closed-end” legal case and deal with the “uber” case, a wrongful termination lawsuit against the Charleston Police Department, Stevens said.

If “Reckless” is renewed, there would be “a new uber case that would still involve our cops, our lawyers” in its second season, Stevens said.

CBS Entertainment Chairman Nina Tassler told City News Service CBS ordered the series because Stevens “really captured the flavor of the culture, the politics and the people of the South.”

Stevens also “found a way to tell soapy, sexy stories” while weaving in “strong legal and political cases,” Tassler said.

CBS executives found the cases in “Reckless” “all that more interesting because of the relationships and the politics of the South, which still very much influence how the law goes, how relationships are made and the fact there is a still a multi-generational stronghold (of) certain ways of doing things,” Tassler said.

“Reckless” also is “the type of escapist television you want for summer,” because of its serialized element, Tassler said. Its connection to CBS’ long-running summer competition series “Big Brother,” which precedes it, was another plus, Tassler said.

“Much of what people love about ‘Big Brother’ (are) the politics and the strategies that go on and the alliances that are formed,” Tassler said.

“We felt ‘Reckless’ was almost a scripted version of ‘Big Brother.”’

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