Trophy Wife on ABC
The new hit comedy Trophy Wife airs Tuesdays 9:30/8:30c on ABC. Trophy Wife is a fun comedy about a slightly older man, Pete (Bradley Whitford), who marries his third wife, Kate (Malin Akerman), or also known as the trophy wife. Kate’s a reformed party girl with a big party girl friend, Meg (Natalie Morales). Kate jumps into an instant family with three stepchildren and two ex-wives. Kate is determined to be the best step-mother and wife by becoming a part of the family. The whole time she gets to deal with Pete’s two ex-wives, Jackie (Michaela Watkins) and Diane (Marcia Gay Harden). You’ll quick find yourself falling in love with the eccentric children, Warren (Ryan Lee), Bert (Albert Tsai) and Hillary (Bailee Madison).
During our Los Angeles trip, we got the opportunity to pre-screen the Trophy Wife episodes, “The Wedding: Part One” and “The Wedding: Part Two”, meet Malin Akerman and interview the executive producers. The 2-part episodes are so fun and definitely unexpected. I absolutely love Kate’s mother, Cricket (Megan Mullally), they bring into these episodes. I adore Megan Mullally so that was a great addition to the show. I hope they feature her more and more! Be sure to watch for the Muppets theme throughout the wedding. I’m sure you read all about our Muppets Red Carpet experience already!
“The Wedding: Part One” Pete and Kate decide to renew their vows, but they get more than they bargained for when Kate is found to be living in the country illegally. Jackie and Dianne are in parallel as they struggle to let their relationships go “public”.
“The Wedding: Part Two” Pete agrees to let Kate plan a “do over” wedding when she has regrets about their elopement; Diane makes a decision about her relationship; Jackie struggles to tell Bert that she and Sad Steve are dating.
I don’t want to give anything away so be sure you watch Trophy Wife Tuesday nights at 9:30/8:30c. A great comedy for the whole family! You will love it! I can’t imagine why anyone would not find this show fun and entertaining!
I met Malin Akerman at our ABC Mom’s Night cocktail party. I already loved her from The Proposal and Couples Retreat so meeting her was such a treat. I had imagined her to be super nice and fun. She was definitely like I had imagined! Extremely nice and easy to talk to. Such an amazing person and absolutely gorgeous!
We were also able to interview the creators and executive producers Sarah Haskins and Emily Halpern. The show is loosely based on Sarah Haskins life. I have found that often times (not always of course) shows are based on one of the creators life or the ideas come from their life experiences.
Trophy Wife Q&A with Sarah Haskins and Emily Halpern:
How did you come up with the idea for Trophy Wife?
Sarah Haskins: We’re the creators, so we came up with the idea together. It’s very loosely based on my life. I married an older man who’d been married a few times before and has children from those different marriages. Kind of like Malin Akerman’s character, without rocking the short shorts.
It’s a situation that while unique and highly specific, is also very universal. People have dealt with divorce and co-parenting. It’s very common and we thought has a place on TV.
The characters have very good chemistry. How hard was it to get who you wanted?
Sarah: We filmed the pilot off cycle and we didn’t appreciate it at the time. That wound up being a huge advantage because we weren’t competing for all the exact same actors as all of the other pilots at the same time. And a lot of that had to do with Malin. She was really the first piece. ABC had actually passed on Trophy Wife the first year we developed it and ultimately it was given a second life when Malin read the script and ABC really wanted to work with her. And so did we.
Why do a wedding episode now?
Emily: We were kind of trying to think of a big episode idea. Honestly, we knew this was gonna air in March. It was a 2-parter. In a comedy, we can’t shoot the president [Laughs] so how big can we go? A wedding felt good to us.
What’s next for Trophy Wife?
Sarah: Hopefully season 2!
Emily: We just finished editing our season finale and our fate is in ABC’s hands. But we hope we get to come back to do some more.
Sarah: Yeah, and appropriately, our season finale is a Mother’s Day episode. It helps wrap up Kate’s arc all season of “Am I a mom in this family’s eyes or am I just a trophy wife?”
How’d you come up with the specific characters? Who were the influences?
Sarah: We talked about my emotional reactions to meeting my husband’s exes. His first wife is super intimidating. She’s French and she’s a lawyer and she went to Brown and blah blah blah. So she was so intimidating that we took that intimidating factor and made that Diane. I think everyone probably has an experience with an intimidating ex who you don’t want to hear about.
And then the Jackie character came out of dealing with the boundaries of a blended family. No one in particular. It’s just hard to say where your nuclear family ends and your everybody family begins. And Jackie is someone who is strongly on the everybody is family portion of the spectrum. That’s just a fun character to have.
Do the ex wives know it’s about them?
Sarah: I wouldn’t say it’s about them. One of them watches it and one of them doesn’t. The intimidating one does watch it.
Emily: And she has notes every week! [Laughs]
I do think we consciously try to write all three women as strong characters. And once we sort of had whatever the stereotype was, we really worked hard to try to make sure that they felt like complete characters and strong women and had their own independence.
What’s the writing process like?
Sarah: There’s a lot of diverse life experiences in our writer’s room, so people would pitch stories. The Lice Story came from a writer who just had a super embarrassing lice breakdown with her kids at school. They had to take home all the pillows in school and wash them. It sounded horrible.
And just issues like The Punisher, was actually from one of our male co-Executive Producers who was just like, “How does she learn to do that? How do you do that?” And I think that’s just his anxiety about being a parent some days. So that’s where The Punisher episode came from.
Emily: We also try to think of what’s the funniest one line story we can think of. And then just build a bigger story on top of it. If the premise is funny, the story is funny. We can make that work. We have an episode coming up where Warren joins the girl’s field hockey team and that idea made us laugh and we built a story around it.
Trophy Wife (@TrophyWifeABC) #TrophyWife #ABCTVEvent
ABC Tuesdays 9:30/8:30 c
SARAH HASKINS & EMILY HALPERN (“TROPHY WIFE” Executive Producers)
Are you or know anyone who is a trophy wife?