Geri Jewell, plus Roddenberry in the 1970s: Next on TVC

Actress and author Geri Jewell and author and screenwriter Marc Cushman will join us this weekend on TV CONFIDENTIAL, airing Friday 7pm ET and PT on Share-a-Vision Radio,

Born with cerebral palsy, Geri Jewell shattered the glass ceiling for or individuals with disabilities when Norman Lear cast her as Cousin Geri on the long-running series The Facts of Life, making her the first person with a disability to appear in a recurring role on a network TV series. Geri also shattered perceptions when David Milch cast her as Jewel, the cleaning woman, on the hit Golden Globe and Emmy-winning HBO series Deadwood.

Geri will reprise her role—as will Ian McShane, Timothy Olyphant, Molly Parker, Brad Dourif, William Sanderson, Gerald McRaney, and other Deadwood cast members—in the long-awaited Deadwood sequel film, which will premiere Friday, May 31 on HBO, HBO Now, HBO Go and HBO on Demand. Geri Jewell will join us in our second hour.

Geri Jewell can also be seen, along with Lee Purcell, Donna Mills, Donna Pescow, and Andrea F. Freeman, in Carol of the Bells, a new independent film directed by Joey Travolta and his company, Inclusion Films, which teaches and employs people in the film industry who have developmental and physical disabilities. Carol of the Bells will be among the spotlight films screened at this year’s Bentonville Film Festival in Bentonville, Arkansas on Friday, May 10; it is also slated scheduled to receive a wider release later in 2019. Geri’s book, I’m Walking as Straight as I Can: Transcending Disability in Hollywood and Beyond, is a candid and poignant look at some of the many obstacles that Geri has overcome throughout her life and career—some of which had to do with living with cerebral palsy, some of which had to accepting her sexuality, but a lot of which had to do with the nature of people and the entertainment industry itself.

Also this week: We’ll pay tribute to the Great Bird of the Galaxy as we welcome back award-winning writer and director Mark Cushman. Marc’s credits as a screenwriter include scripts for Star Trek: The Next Generation, Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction, Diagnosis Murder, plus the feature films Midnight Confessions, Teresa’s Tattoo, The Magic of Christmas, and In the Eyes of a Killer, while his credits as a director include the award winning comedy-documentary Desperately Seeking Paul McCartney, An Evening with the Golddiggers, and The Story of O: Untold Pleasures. In addition, as you know from Marc’s last appearance on TV Confidential, Marc Cushman has written extensively about the history of television, including These Are the Voyages, a critically acclaimed three-volume history of the original Star Trek, plus equally comprehensive works on the history of I Spy and the shows of Irwin Allen.

Marc recently collaborated with the estate of Gene Roddenberry, the cooperation of which made possible the release of These Are the Voyages: Gene Roddenberry and Star Treks in the 1970s, a two-volume set that chronicles the career of Gene Roddenberry between the cancellation of the original Star Trek in 1969 to its triumphant return, as a feature length major motion picture, in 1979. During this ten-year period, Roddenberry experienced a lot of personal and professional up and downs, in film and in television, while Star Trek itself became a worldwide phenomenon. Marc Cushman will join us in our first hour.

TV CONFIDENTIAL: A radio talk show about television
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