Emmy Rossum to Star in 'Angelyne' Limited Series Based on Hollywood Reporter Article
'Mr. Robot' creator Sam Esmail will develop and exec produce the Universal Cable Productions drama based on THR senior writer
Gary Baum's investigative feature on the Los Angeles billboard diva.
An only-in-Hollywood story is finally getting the Hollywood treatment.
Shameless star Emmy Rossum and Mr. Robot creator Sam Esmail are teaming with The Hollywood Reporter to create a limited
series based on THR senior writer Gary Baum's investigative feature about Angelyne, L.A.'s mysterious billboard icon.
Rossum will star as Angelyne, the self-created pop culture icon — whose real name, uncovered in Baum's August exposé, is Renee
Goldberg. Rossum will exec produce via her Grey Matters Pictures company alongside her husband, Esmail, and his Universal Cable
Productions-based EsmailCorp banner. Esmail's manager, Chad Hamilton, will exec produce via Anonymous Content. The limited
series project will be shopped to cable and streaming outlets. Baum, who spent months researching Angelyne's past, will serve as a
consultant on the drama.
Right: "She was unique, beautiful, smart," says Michael Strauss, recalling the woman who briefly was his wife. Left: Angelyne in 1986,
near the start of her fame.
"I have always been fascinated by the enigma that is Angelyne," Rossum said
in a statement. “At a young age, I can vividly remember staring up at her on a
billboard above me and wondering, ‘Who is that woman?’ Gary Baum's
investigative journalism has finally unearthed the true, complex identity of the
infamous woman who has fascinated Los Angeles for over 30 years. From
the moment I read Gary's recent piece, I knew I had to tell this story. It's a
poignant and bizarre tale about the hunger for fame, the sexualization of
women and the erasing of past traumas.”
Angelyne, 67, is the L.A.-raised daughter of Holocaust survivors, a Jew who found refuge in what Baum described as "shiksa drag."
She was born in Poland in 1950 to parents who were among the 500 to survive out of a town of 13,000. Her parents were sent to
concentration camps before escaping to America and settling in L.A.'s Fairfax District. After Angelyne's mother died in 1965, her father
remarried another Holocaust survivor and the family moved to Panorama City, where she attended high school. While her paper trail
ends there, Angelyne soon reinvented herself as a blonde bombshell, famous simply for being famous, by appearing on billboards in
Los Angeles and driving a pink Cadillac around Hollywood.
The Angelyne project marks the first scripted television adaptation of a Hollywood Reporter article since the publication's reinvention
as a weekly magazine and home for longform journalism.
"We are very excited to bring THR to the next level with this new push into television,” said John Amato, president of The Hollywood
Reporter-Billboard Media Group. Added Matthew Belloni, editorial director of The Hollywood Reporter: “Vivid storytelling about compelling
Hollywood figures is at the heart of The Hollywood Reporter’s editorial mission. We’re excited to begin adapting our unique pieces of
journalism for film, television and digital platforms.”
This will be the second time that Esmail has worked with Rossum. The duo met while making his directorial debut Comet, in which
she starred. The couple married in May.
Esmail has been expanding his TV and film
footprint beyond USA Network's Mr. Robot
(currently airing its third season). Esmail will
direct and exec produce a two-season,
straight-to-series order at Amazon for Julia
Roberts' TV series Homecoming, based on
the podcast of the same name. He's attached
to write and direct a Bermuda triangle feature
film for Universal Pictures and is readying a
miniseries based on Fritz Lang's sci-fi classic
Metropolis for Universal Cable Productions.
Rossum, meanwhile, recently saw her
dramedy Shameless renewed for a ninth
season at Showtime, where the series ranks
as its most-watched original. The actress,
whose credits also include The Day After
Tomorrow and Phantom of the Opera, held
out for equal pay with Shameless star William
H. Macy last year.
"Once again, Sam and Chad are bringing a
captivating story to life,” said Dawn Olmstead,
exec vp development at UCP. “We couldn’t
be happier to partner with The Hollywood
Reporter and the incredibly talented Emmy
Rossum in bringing Angelyne’s intriguing
story to life. We look forward to finding this
project a great home."
While the Angelyne limited series marks a
first for THR, the publication recently was
nominated for a Daytime Emmy award for
the unscripted series Close Up With The
Hollywood Reporter. The series, based on
THR's awards season roundtables, airs on
Rossum is repped by CAA, MGMT Entertainment and Felker Toczek. Esmail is with CAA, Hamilton at Anonymous Content and
Copyright 2017 © AMBIENTE MAGAZINE.
Do not reproduce without citing this source.
You Celebrating 6