TREVOR DONOVAN CAST AS EDDY ARNOLD IN CMT'S SCRIPTED DRAMA "MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET"
NASHVILLE - April 6, 2016 - Trevor Donovan ("JL Ranch," "Texas Rising") is set to join the cast of CMT's new scripted drama "Million Dollar Quartet" (working title) as Eddy Arnold, country music and pop phenomenon with 85 million records sold and 28 No. 1 hits during his 60 year career. The son of a sharecropper, Arnold's inimitable baritone voice brought country to the masses, and made him the most popular country artist of the 20th century with hits including "Make The World Go Away." Arnold and Elvis Presley shared much in common throughout their careers, including manager Colonel Tom Parker. Arnold has been cited as having profound influence on Elvis, who cut a number of his songs over the years. He also ranked among CMT's list of "The 40 Greatest Men of Country Music."
Donovan joins an all-star cast including Chad Michael Murray ("Agent Carter," "Outlaws and Angels" and "Texas Rising")as Sun Records founder Sam Phillips, and Billy Gardell ("Mike & Molly")as Presley and Arnold's impervious manager, Colonel Tom Parker. Other cast members include Drake Milligan (Elvis Presley), Kevin Fonteyne (Johnny Cash), Christian Lees (Jerry Lee Lewis), Jonah Lees (Jimmy Swaggart), Keir O'Donnell (Dewey Phillips), Jennifer Holland (Sam's wife Becky Phillips) and Margaret Anne Florence (Sam's assistant Marion Keisker).
A period drama inspired by the Tony award-winning musical, "Million Dollar Quartet" is timed to the historic 60th anniversary of the famous recording sessions featuring icons Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins. Production began this week in Memphis, and the series is slated to premiere in November.
"Million Dollar Quartet" is a coming-of-age story set in Memphis during the tumultuous early days of the civil rights movement, and tells the untold true story of nothing less than the birth of rock 'n' roll. Guided by Sam Phillips, young musicians like Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis combined the styles of hillbilly country with the 1950s R&B sound created by artists like Muddy Waters, B.B. King, Fats Domino and Ike Turner, and changed the course of music forever. The series chronicles these young artists' often jarring and sudden meteoric rise to fame in the face of sweeping political change and social unrest.
The series marks one of two scripted projects coming to CMT this year. On June 12, CMT will premiere "Still The King," an ensemble comedy starring Billy Ray Cyrus, Joey Lauren Adams ("Big Daddy," "Mall Rats"), Madison Iseman ("Laid in America" and Nickelodeon's "Henry Danger") Lacey Chabert ("Mean Girls" and "Party of Five"), Leslie David Baker ("The Office"), Kevin Farley ("Eight Crazy Nights" and "The Waterboy") and more.
"Million Dollar Quartet" is produced by Thinkfactory Media with Leslie Greif ("Hatfields & McCoys") as executive producer, Gil Grant ("24" and "NCIS: Los Angeles") as executive producer and showrunner, Barry Berg as co-executive producer and Herb Nanas and Colin Escott as producers. Oscar nominee Roland Joffé will direct, with Jayson Dinsmore and Julia Silverton as executive producers for CMT. The series is based on the book written by Floyd Mutrux and Escott, with original concept and direction by Mutrux. Casting done by Fern Champion and Sharon Lieblein.
About Thinkfactory Media
Thinkfactory Media is a full-service production company that creates high-quality entertainment content. Renowned for award-winning productions, the company was the driving force behind the Emmy(R) and Golden Globe(R)-nominated hit mini-series Hatfields & McCoys (History), starring Kevin Costner. Other recent credits include: The 10-hour television event Texas Rising (History), Marriage Boot Camp (We tv), Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars (We tv), Married By Mom and Dad (TLC), Dead of Winter: The Donner Party (The Weather Channel), Vet School (Nat Geo WILD) Preachers' Daughters (Lifetime), R&B Divas: Atlanta (TV One), R&B Divas: Los Angeles (TV One), Queens of Drama (Pop), Jump! (Lifetime), Strange Love (TLC), Big Giant Swords (Discovery), Gene Simmons: Family Jewels (A&E), Tony Danza: Teach (A&E), among many others. Find out more about Thinkfactory Media and its projects at www.ThinkfactoryMedia.com and follow them on Twitter at @TFactoryMedia.
CMT, a unit of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIA, VIAB), is the leading television and digital authority on country music and entertainment, reaching more than 92 million homes in the U.S. CMT, CMT.com and CMT Radio offer an unparalleled mix of music, news, live concerts and series and are the top resource for country music on demand. The network's digital platforms include the 24-hour music channel, CMT Music, CMT App, CMT Mobile and CMT VOD.