- This article is about the upcoming TV show, adapted from Melissa de la Cruz' Beauchamp Family series.
You were maybe looking for the novel of the same name ; see Witches of East End (Book).
Inspired by Melissa de la Cruz’s New York Times best-selling novel, Witches of East End centers on the mysterious Beauchamp family: free-spirited artist Joanna and her two grown daughters, wild-child bartender Freya and shy librarian Ingrid, both of whom are unaware that they are gifted - and cursed - with a magical birthright. Freya is recently engaged to the man of her dreams, wealthy playboy Dash Gardiner, but when she finds herself inexplicably drawn to Dash’s troubled, enigmatic brother Killian, bizarre occurrences begin to manifest in her life. Meanwhile, Joanna’s long-estranged sister Wendy shows up with a warning that could change the Beauchamps’ fate forever, forcing Joanna to reveal to her daughters they are, indeed, immortal witches who possess great untapped powers. With their idyllic small town life now turned upside down, and a formidable and ancient enemy intent on ending the Beauchamp family line, will Freya and Ingrid be able to accept their true potential before it is too late?
It was revealed on July 19, 2012 that Lifetime had picked up Witches of East End as a pilot for its 2013 season, along The Secret Live of Wives. The show would be executive-produced by both Maggie Friedman (Dawson's Creek, Eastwick) and Erwin Stoff (The Matrix), and produced by Fox 21, and if the pilot was pleasing the network executive producers, then it would be granted a full season.
However, on December 17, 2012, Jenna Dewan and husband Channing Tatum announced publicly that the actress was bearing their first child. This had left the exact fate of the show unknown, since filming the whole series could have been post-poned or the project completely dropped.
As of the beginning of 2013, Lifetime had a total of three pilots which could become a series later on : Witches of East End ; Cinnamon Girl, produced by Renee Zellweger and The Secret Lives of Wives. In mid-January, the network cancelled Drop Dead Diva after its fourth season, and declared the pilot for The Secret Lives of Wives scrapped, leaving only Cinnamon Girls and Witches of East End to join the seventh season of Army Wives and the second of The Client List, along with the ABC dropped-Desperate Housewives spin-off, Devious Maids, on the 2013 schedule.
On January 31, 2013, Witches of East End was the first of its two remaining shows to be picked up by the cable network Lifetime. The drama was announced to be composed of ten episodes to begin with and was scheduled to shoot and premiere in the course of 2013. Of the project, Rob Sharenow, executive VP of programming for Lifetime Networks, had to say : "We've been thrilled about Witches of East End and its powerful premise since the moment we bought the property, and our friends at Fox 21 helped develop it for television. This is one of the most exciting ensemble casts we've seen and the whole show is fresh, original and just right for Lifetime." Later on, the newtork announced as well it would pass on the Cinnamon Girls pilot. And after it was made public Lifetime had revived Drop Dead Diva for a fifth season, the network had finally a total of five scripted shows to air in 2013.
By the end of 2013, Lifetime renewed Devious Maids and Drop Dead Diva, but cancelled The Client List and Army Wives. Witches of East End was renewed for a second season as well, on November 22, 2013.
CastingEditJulia Ormond had landed a main role on the show, as Joanna Beauchamp. On September 14, 2012, the role of Freya Beauchamp was officially given to Jenna Dewan. A few days later, on September 17, 2012, the lead male role of Dash Gardiner was attributed to Patrick Heusinger. And on September 19, 2012, Rachel Boston and model Daniel Di Tomasso were announced to have earned the two remaining main roles, respectively Ingrid Beauchamp and Killian Gardiner. Finally, as announced on September 25, 2012, Nicholas Gonzalez would portray detective Matt Torcoletti. On October 9, 2012, two guest star announcements were made : both Mädchen Amick and Glenne Headly would join the cast of Witches of East End - the first one as Wendy (Joanna's sister) and the second as Penelope (the Gardiner borthers' mother). Tom Lenk was later given the role of Hudson Rafferty, Ingrid's gay best-friend, as announced on October 16, 2012.
 On June 26, TVLine revealed that Eric Winter would replace Patrick Heusinger as Dash Gardiner. On July 9, the recurring role of the detective Adam (formerly Matt Torcoletti) was attributed to Jason George. On July 12, Virginia Masden replaced Glenne Headly for a multi-episode arc as Penelope, Dash and Killian's mother.
Other recurring roles were also announced as the series was being filmed. On August 12, Freddie Prinze Jr. booked a guest role on the show, as Leo Wingate, with the possibility that it could become recurring. On August 14, Anthony Lemke was cast as recurring Harrison Welles. On October 2, Joel Gretsch was announced for a two-episode arc as Victor. And on October 9, Enver Gjokaj was confirmed as having received a major recurring role as Mike.
Filming the pilot began on October 16, 2012 in the port town of Wilmington, North Carolina, where several scenes were shot. On October 29, 2012, the crew moved for a week to Macon, Georgia, where they filmed the wedding scenes for the pilot at the historical Hay House. On Monday 5, 2012, the crew returned to filming in North Carolina for a final day of shooting.
When the network Lifetime announced Witches of East End was going to be a series, it was also revealed that filming the rest of the series would happen in Vancouver, Canada, instead of continuing in Wilmington, NC. Later on, the filming period was announced as going from July 16 to October 21. On Monday 10, Maggie Friedman announced on twitter she was scouting locations for the series, trying to "find Fair Haven".
Season 1 (2013)Edit
- Main article: Season 1
The first season of Witches of East End is to be composed of ten episodes.
Season 2 (2014)Edit
The second season will be composed of 13 episodes.
- Brianne Davis as Caitlin Parker (first Pilot only).
- Nicholas Gonzalez as Matt Torcoletti.
- Neil Hopkins as Doug.
- Matt Frewer as Vidar.
- Freddie Prinze Jr. as Leo Wingate.
- Kaitlin Doubleday as Elyse.
- Matthew del Negro as a Archibald Browning.
Witches of East End, whose production began in the summer of 2012, and which was ordered for a full series on January 31, 2013, will make its debut on TV on October 6 on Lifetime.
|Canada||Lifetime Canada||Oct. 6, 2013|
|Italia||Fox Life||Dec. 4, 2013|
|United Kingdom||Lifetime UK||Nov. 5, 2013|
Critical reaction to Witches of East End has been mixed, with a score of 50 on Metacritic and 61% for the first season so far on Rotten Tomatoes with a consensus saying "Although it's ridiculously soapy, Witches of East End is often campy fun; it's a supernatural spectacle that's entertaining despite its silliness."
Diane Werts of Newsday gave the show a positive review, saying "What's utterly clear is that the starter hour picks up steam whenever loose-cannon Amick bops around - although Ormond does a nice job of grounding its shenanigans in a semblance of reality." She finishes her review giving the pilot a B rating. Allison Keene from The Hollywood Reporter also praised the premiere, claiming "Witches of East End is up against a number of other supernatural shows, and there becomes a question of saturation. Fortunately or unfortunately, we aren't at that point, yet. It seems there's plenty more room at the table, and there, Witches of East End currently looks like the most fun." Neil Genzlinger of The New York Times also gave the show a glowing review, starting off by negativelly reviewing the "humorless" witches on shows such as the 2013 debuts of Sleepy Hollow and The Originals, then going on to say Witches of East End is a welcome relief to those series. He further applauds the casting and characters, saying "thanks to zippy repartee among the stars. Ms. Amick is hilarious, and Ms. Dewan Tatum and Ms. Boston make a pretty amusing pair of mismatched sisters." He ends the review with "there is a lot of heavy fare on television on Sunday nights. If “Witches” can retain its wry tone, it will be a satisfying alternative for viewers looking for a lighter way to end the weekend."
Witches of East End premiered on a hectic Sunday night with 1.93 million viewers. The premiere also achieved a 0.7 in adults 18-49. Though the premiere was down from the June 23 premiere of Lifetime's other new show Devious Maids, Witches of East End faced a lot of tough competition during primetime season and ended the night being the number two scripted drama on cable, behind Boardwalk Empire. The second episode saw an increase to 0.8 in adults 18-49 despite the return of The Walking Dead. In viewers, the show remained completely even from its premiere with 1.93 million, and was the second highest-rated drama of the night again, behind The Walking Dead.
- Some similarities with Eastwick, another witch-based show, have already been displayed.
- First of all, the role of Maggie Friedman, who wrote and produced both shows.
- Then, the presence of Rachel Boston and Jason George, who both had guest/recurring roles on Eastwick.
- And finally, funny similarities in names:
- Joanna was also the first name of one of the main three witches, a young and shy journalist.
- the surname Torcoletti (which is the surname of detective Matt Noble in the show) was Roxanne/Roxie's, another main protagonist in the former show.
- the surname Gardiner (from Killian and Bran) closely resembles the one of the last witch of the Eastwick trio: Katherin "Kat" Garderner.
Witches of East End
|Joanna Beauchamp · Ingrid Beauchamp · Freya Beauchamp · Wendy Beauchamp · Killian Gardiner · Dash Gardiner|
|Adam Noble · Penelope Gardiner · Harrison Welles · Barb · Hudson Rafferty · Amy Matthews · Mike · Victor|
|Pilot · Marilyn Fenwick, R.I.P. · Today I am a Witch · A few good talismen · Electric Avenue|
Potentia Noctis · Unburied · Snake Eyes · A Parching Imbued · Oh, What a World!
|Lifetime · Beauchamp Family series|