STARZ TAKES NEW VARIATION ON LIMITED SERIES "THE GIRLFRIEND EXPERIENCE" WITH TWO PARALLEL STORYLINES IN SEASON TWO
Steven Soderbergh to Executive Produce with
Lodge Kerrigan and Amy Seimetz Serving as Showrunners,
Writers and Directors for Each Storyline
Anna Friel, Louisa Krause and Carmen Ejogo Join "The Girlfriend Experience" Second Season
Beverly Hills, Calif. -January 26, 2017 - Starz announced today that the second season of the STARZ limited series "The Girlfriend Experience," executive produced by Steven Soderbergh (Ocean's Eleven, Magic Mike, "The Knick") and Philip Fleishman, will feature two parallel storylines - each written, directed and executive produced by Lodge Kerrigan and Amy Seimetz. Kerrigan and Seimetz served as writers, directors and executive producers on season one of the limited series. Jeff Cuban, Andrew Fierberg (Secretary, My Art) and Academy(R) Nominated and Golden Globe(R)-winning producer Adele Romanski (Moonlight) will also executive produce.
Breaking with last season's format and following two parallel stories this season, "The Girlfriend Experience" will focus on entirely new characters, relationships, plotlines and locations while exploring the price of intimacy and its emotional consequences. One storyline for the 14-episode scripted anthology series will be set in Washington, D.C. and the other, in New Mexico
"It was always our intention to change the universe every season, but Amy and Lodge have cranked up the ambition, scope, and complexity of the show by creating two storylines even more provocative and confrontational than last year's. I'm as excited as a Swedish person is allowed to get," Soderbergh said.
Kerrigan's storyline is set against the backdrop of the corrupting influence of dark money in the upcoming 2018 U.S. mid-term elections, where everything and everyone has a price. This section of the second season of "The Girlfriend Experience" tracks an unexpected and complex relationship between Erica Myles, a commanding and strong-willed finance director of a Republican super PAC, and Anna Greenwald, a confident and intelligent GFE provider at the top of her game. Erica is under intense pressure to deliver on her super PAC fundraising goals. She meets Anna and enlists her help in blackmailing a high-powered dark money fundraiser. After their initial exchange, Erica and Anna fall into a complicated sexual relationship, marked by an exploration of vulnerability, dominance and submission, which also draws in Erica's manipulative ex-girlfriend. The mix of personal instability and career pressure mount and lead Erica down a path, both professionally and personally, that she struggles to control.
Anna Friel ("Broken," "Marcella," "Pushing Daisies") will portray Erica Myles and Louisa Krause ("Billions," "Blue Bloods," "The Flick") will play Anna Greenwald.
Anna Friel most recently filmed the lead role in Hans Rosenfeldt's first-ever UK television drama "Marcella." Prior to that, she filmed Tomato Red with Oscar(R)-nominated director Juanita Wilson and I.T. opposite Pierce Brosnan. She also starred as the lead in Peter Horton's "American Odyssey" for NBC which aired last year on Netflix and BBC2 as well as WW2 drama "Heavy Water War." Friel is also set to appear in the new gritty BBC drama "Broken" this Spring. Friel has been acting since the age of 13, appearing in a number of British television programs. She made her West End stage debut in London in 2001, and has subsequently appeared on stage in several productions, including an adaptation of "Breakfast at Tiffany's." She is the recipient of a number of awards including National Television Award (1995), Drama Desk Award (1999), and the Royal Television Society Award (2009) and was nominated for a Golden Globe in (2008) for the comedy series Pushing Dasies. Friel is repped by The Artists Partnership, UTA and Untitled Entertainment.
Louisa Krause is known for her roles in Young Adult, Martha Marcy May Marlene and Return. Her upcoming films include New Money, The Super, Woman Walks Ahead, You Can't Win opposite Michael Pitt, as well as The Great and the Small, and Thomas Woodrow's We've Forgotten More Than We Ever Knew. She plays the title roles in Jane Wants a Boyfriend as a young woman with Asperger's Syndrome (Favorite Actress, Napa Film Festival), and Ava's Possessions, which premiered at SXSW. Additionally, Krause has supporting roles in The Phenom, Donald Cried, Dog Eat Dog, and Bare, which premiered at the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival. Television work includes "Law & Order," "Law & Order: CI" and "Blue Bloods." She can also be seen in the Showtime series "Billions" as Louise (Lu) Benjamin. Krause is repped by Washington Square Films and Schreck, Rose, Dapello & Adams.
Seimetz' storyline follows Bria Jones. After discovering disturbing information about a regular client, Jones is forced to relocate to a remote location in New Mexico. Unable to shake her desire for risky relationships and the finer things in life, Bria navigates her new penniless and surreal existence by forming eerily intimate transactional relationships. While Bria's ghosts from the past continue to haunt, her new connections with men redefine the meaning of the Girlfriend Experience.
Carmen Ejogo (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Selma, "Zero Hours,") will play Bria Jones. Ejogo is best known thus far for her leading role of civil rights activist 'Coretta Scott in Ava DuVernay's universally acclaimed Selma. She was most recently seen playing the key role of Seraphina Picquery, 'President of the Magical Congress of the United States of America' in J.K.Rowling's Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them alongside an all-star cast including Eddie Redmayne, Colin Farrell, Ezra Miller, Jon Voigt and Samantha Morton. Ejogo will next appear in Ridley Scott's highly anticipated prequel Alien: Covenant later this year. She once again played the role of Coretta Scott King in HBO's critically acclaimed film for television Boycott which earned her a 2001 Image Award nomination for Outstanding Actress in a TV film or miniseries. Ejogo also starred as FBI agent Becca Sunjata in the ABC television series "Zero Hour" opposite Anthony Edwards.
Senior Vice President of Original Programing Ken Segna is the Starz executive in charge of "The Girlfriend Experience."
STARZ Limited series "The Girlfriend Experience" was a reimagining of Steven Soderbergh's 2009 critically acclaimed movie of the same name. Season one of "The Girlfriend Experience" starred Riley Keough as Christine Reade, a second year student at Chicago-Burnham Law School and a new intern at a prestigious law firm. All 13 half-hour episodes of the first season were made available for STARZ subscribers when it debuted in April 2016 on the STARZ app and STARZ ON DEMAND.
In December 2016, the STARZ app was named by Apple(R) as one of Apple TV's(R) "10 Best Apps of the Year," and has consistently ranked in the Top 10 Entertainment Top Grossing category on iTunes since its launch in April 2016.
Starz (www.starz.com), a Lionsgate company (NYSE: LGF.A, LGF.B), is a leading global media and entertainment company that provides premium subscription video programming on domestic U.S. pay television networks and produces and distributes content for worldwide audiences, including its investment in the STARZ PLAY Arabia OTT service. Starz is home to the flagship STARZ(R) brand with 24.5 million subscribers in the United States as of September 30, 2016, with the STARZ ENCORESM network at 31.5 million subscribers. Starz provides high-quality, entertaining premium subscription video programming with 17 premium pay TV channels and associated on-demand and online services, including the STARZ app. Sold through U.S. multichannel video distributors, including cable operators, satellite television providers, telecommunications companies, and other online and digital platforms, Starz offers subscribers more than 5,000 distinct premium television episodes and feature films every year and up to 1,500 every month, including STARZ Original series, first-run movies and other popular movie and television programming.