Alicia Witt ('The Upside Of Anger,' 'Cybill'), Matthew Settle ('Brothers & Sisters'), Scott Bakula and Talia Shire ('Rocky,' 'The Godfather') Set to Star in 'Blue Smoke,' Based on the Nora Roberts Best-Selling Novel and the Fourth in the Series of Lifetime Original Movies Airing in February 2007
Peter Guber's Mandalay Television and Stephanie Germain Productions to
LOS ANGELES, Nov. 6 -- Alicia Witt ("The Upside of Anger,"
"Two Weeks Notice," "Cybill"), Matthew Settle ("Brothers & Sisters," "Band
of Brothers"), Scott Bakula ("Star Trek: Enterprise," "Quantum Leap") and
Talia Shire ("Rocky," "The Godfather") will star in the upcoming Lifetime
Original Movie "Blue Smoke," based on the book of the same name by
best-selling author Nora Roberts, it was announced today by Libby Beers,
Vice President, Original Movies. "Blue Smoke" is the story of Reena, a
young woman who, after watching her family business burn to the ground as a
child, becomes an arson investigator and steps into the greatest inferno
she has ever faced. "Blue Smoke" will premiere in February 2007 on Lifetime
"This is another incredible work from Nora Roberts that is full of
suspense and drama with a romantic twist, said Beers. "Alicia Witt
perfectly embodies the role of Reena who must get into the mind of an
arsonist to unravel a mystery that's possessed her since childhood. We're
also thrilled to have Matthew Settle, an exciting talent, who is so well
cast as the irresistible Bo and Scott Bakula, who has an extraordinary fan
base, in the role of Minger."
Peter Guber, Stephanie Germain and Peter Strauss are the executive
producers of "Blue Smoke." Principal photography has been completed on
three Lifetime movies based on Nora Roberts books including: "Carolina
Moon" starring Claire Forlani, Oliver Hudson and Jacqueline Bisset;
"Montana Sky" starring John Corbett, Ashley Williams, Charlotte Ross and
Diane Ladd; and "Angels Fall" starring Heather Locklear and Johnathon
"Blue Smoke" tells the story of Reena Hale (Witt), whose life is
changed forever when she witnesses a tragic fire that occurs at her mother
(Shire) and father's pizzeria. While friends and family help to rebuild all
that was lost in the flames, from that moment on, young Reena is drawn to
the force of a fire's blaze and the power it possesses. Years later, she
becomes a detective working on the police department's arson task force
alongside her hero, John Minger (Bakula), the man who found out who was
responsible for the fire at her family's restaurant.
Soon, Reena meets Bo Goodnight (Settle), a hunky carpenter who becomes
her next door neighbor and paramour. Yet despite her newfound happiness,
the man who once stalked her reappears and targets her and her new found
flame. To survive, Reena must track down the psychopathic arsonist before
they both get burned, permanently.
Alicia Witt recently starred on the stage at London's Royal Court
Theatre in Terry Johnson's "Piano/Forte." Her feature film credits include
the upcoming motion picture "88 Minutes" opposite Al Pacino; "Last Holiday"
with Queen Latifah, "The Upside of Anger," "Two Weeks Notice," Cameron
Crowe's "Vanilla Sky," the John Waters film "Cecil B. Demented" and "Four
Witt recently completed her directorial debut with the short film
"Belinda's Swan Song," which she also wrote. The film premiered at the 2006
Rhode Island International Film Festival and was also featured in the Los
Angeles International Short Film Festival. On television, Witt has guest-
starred on "The Sopranos" and "Ally McBeal." She previously starred for
four seasons as Cybill Shepherd's daughter Zoey on the hit sitcom "Cybill."
Witt made her film debut in David Lynch's "Dune." Lynch also cast her
in his cult classic television series, "Twin Peaks." Next, he utilized
Witt's talents once again in his HBO trilogy, "Hotel Room," in which she
portrayed a young woman with multiple personality disorder.
Matthew Settle currently stars in a recurring role as a love interest
to Calista Flockhart's character on the freshman ABC series "Brothers &
Sisters." He has also starred in several notable film and television
projects to include his role as the legendary Captain Ronald Speirs in the
HBO award-winning miniseries "Band of Brothers," produced by Steven
Spielberg. He also starred in "Into the West," a six-week television event,
also produced by Steven Spielberg, and in Peter Bogdanovich's telefilm "The
Mystery of Natalie Wood," in which he portrayed Warren Beatty.
On the big screen, Settle starred in "Celestine Prophecy," the film
adaptation of James Redfield's runaway bestseller, as well as in Callie
Khouri's "Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood;" "U-571," "I Still Know
What You Did This Summer," "Attraction" and "Until the Night."
Scott Bakula is perhaps best known for his five-year stint on the
television series "Quantum Leap," for which he earned a Golden Globe Award
for Best Actor in a Drama Series, as well as three additional nominations
and four Emmy nominations.
Bakula's feature film roles include the Academy Award(R)-winning
"American Beauty," as well as "Life as a House," "Lord of Illusions,"
"Major League: Back to the Minors," "A Passion to Kill," "Mi Familia/My
Family," "Color of Night," "Necessary Roughness" and "Sibling Rivalry."
Most recently, Bakula guest-starred on the television series "The New
Adventures of Old Christine." Previously, he starred for four seasons as
Captain Jonathan Archer on the "Star Trek" prequel series "Enterprise" and
has appeared in such television hits as "Designing Women," "Murphy Brown,"
the miniseries "A Girl Thing," "The Invaders" and "Tom Clancy's Netforce."
His telefilm credits include "Mean Streak," "Papa's Angels," "Bachelor
Baby" and "What Girls Learn."
Bakula received a Tony Award nomination for his starring role in the
Broadway musical "Romance-Romance."
Talia Shire, sister of Francis Ford Coppola and mother of actors Jason
Schwartzman ("Marie Antoinette") and Robert Schwartzman ("The Princess
Diaries"), launched her screen career in 1972 when she was cast in the "The
Godfather." She went on to star in "The Godfather: Part II," for which she
received an Academy Award(R) nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Shire
was cast by Sylvester Stallone to play his girlfriend Adrian in the
mega-hit feature film "Rocky" and won the New York Film Critics Award and
an Academy Award(R) nomination for Best Actress. She went on to appear in
the next four installments of the "Rocky" franchise. Most recently, she
appeared in the feature films "I Heart Huckabees," "Kiss the Bride" and
"She's So Lovely." Her television credits include the classic mini-series
"Rich Man, Poor Man" and the telefilms "Born into Exile" and "Chantilly
Since publishing her first novel in 1981, Roberts has gone on to become
a #1 New York Times best-selling sensation. With more than 295 million
books in print, Roberts' novels have spent 102 weeks at the #1 spot on the
coveted New York Times best-seller list. Roberts's most recent novel Angels
Fall debuted at #1 and spent two weeks in the top position.
"Blue Smoke" is produced by Mandalay Television and Stephanie Germain
Productions for Lifetime Television. Peter Guber ("Rainman," "Batman," "The
Color Purple," "The Jacket"), Stephanie Germain (Lifetime's "Gracie's
Choice," "The Day After Tomorrow") and Peter Strauss ("The Jacket") are the
executive producers. Ronni Kern (Lifetime's Emmy(R)-nominated "Homeless to
Harvard: The Liz Murray Story," "Helen of Troy") wrote the teleplay and
David Carson ("Carrie," "In His Life: The John Lennon Story") will direct.
Mandalay Television has achieved great success in series, made-for-
television movies and miniseries. Mandalay movies and miniseries have
produced some of the strongest ratings of all-time, including Dean Koontz's
"Intensity," a four-hour miniseries based on the best-seller by Dean Koontz
- the highest rated miniseries ever on Fox; "First Daughter," a two-hour
original movie starring Mariel Hemingway for TBS which was the highest
rated basic cable movie in history and spawned two sequels: "First Target"
and "First Shot"; "Blood Crime," which launched USA's Crime Friday and was
the highest rated original program for the network in 2002; and "The Linda
McCartney Story." Mandalay is currently in production on "Brotherhood," the
critically acclaimed series for Showtime.
Lifetime is the leader in women's television and one of the top-rated
basic cable television networks. A diverse, multi-media company, Lifetime
is committed to offering the highest quality entertainment and information
programming, and advocating a wide range of issues affecting women and
their families. Lifetime Television, LMN, Lifetime Real Women, Lifetime
Home Entertainment, and Lifetime Online are part of Lifetime Entertainment
Services, a 50/50 joint venture of The Hearst Corporation and The Walt
SOURCE Lifetime Television