The cast of Lifetime‘s veteran drama Army Wives continues to staff up for the upcoming seventh season. Brant Daugherty has landed a major recurring role. He will play 2nd Lt. Patrick Clark, son of Jackie (Kelli Williams) and Kevin (Robert John Burke). An intelligent, capable infantry officer freshly minted from West Point, Patrick is eager to prove himself in combat. I hear the role, eyed as a potential love interest for Gloria (Alyssa Diaz), may become a regular next season. Daugherty, repped by AKA Talent and Sweeney Entertainment, has a major recurring role on ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars as Lucy Hale’s former love interest and recently completed the male co-lead in the comedy spoof The Starving Games. He is also a recurring on Days Of Our Lives.
Veteran Army Wives is getting a revamp heading into Season 7, which premieres on March 10. The series, about the struggles, dreams and friendships of a diverse group of women – and one man – living with their spouses and families on an active Army post, is adding three actresses as new regulars — Ashanti, Torrey DeVitto and Elle McLemore — as original cast member member Kim Delaney is departing and Sally Pressman and Sterling K. Brown are scaling back from series regulars to recurring.
Brooke Shields has joined Army Wives‘ ever-evolving seventh season.
The actress will recur on the Lifetime drama as Katherine “Kat” Young, a brainy, brash Air Force Colonel, Deadline reports.
Shields’ character is described as a woman who can hold her own in the boys club that is the military. She’ll initially butt heads with Brian McNamara’s Army General Michael Holden.
Shields’ addition comes amid a myriad of other Wives changes, including three new series regulars (Torrey DeVitto, Ashanti and newcomer Elle McLemore), Kim Delaney’s season-opening departure and Sally Pressman’s limited participation.
Army Wives Season 7 premieres Sunday, March 10 at 9/8c.
There’ll be a few new recruits on the base when Army Wives starts Season 7.
The Lifetime drama is adding The Vampire Diaries’ Torrey DeVitto, pop singer Ashanti and newcomer Elle McLemore as series regulars in its upcoming season, Deadline reports.
DeVitto, who’s also a Pretty Little Liars vet, will play a former soldier who gave up the Army to be a mom. Her character, Maggie Hall, is a truck driver married to a staff sergeant.
Ashanti’s character, Latasha Durant, is a “sexy, fun” mother of three who runs her family and marriage with a firm hand. The “Foolish” singer has had guest roles on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and American Dreams.
McLemore will play naive Holly Gordon, a sweet farm girl who recently married a soldier. The actress currently shakes her pom-poms as Eva in Bring It On: The Musical, which is scheduled to end its Broadway run on Dec. 30.
The additions come as the cast undergoes some big changes, including Kim Delaney’s departure in the season opener and Sally Pressman’s limited participation in the episodes ahead.
Army Wives‘ classified Season 7 battle plan has leaked, and if you’re a fan of the show, believe me when I tell you it will have you standing at attention. Not only does it include (at least!) one major casualty, it also includes a handful of new recruits and contains a dozen other bits of top-secret intel. So proceed with caution…
First, the big news: Leading lady Kim Delaney, who has played Claudia Joy Holden since the Lifetime drama launched six years ago, will not be returning — like, ever. Exec producer Jeff Melvoin confirms to TVLine that her character (who is currently travelling overseas) will be killed off in the season premiere — a tragedy that will serve as a launching pad for an almost rebooted program. “The first two [episodes] will be very emotional, and it will confirm that Claudia Joy is no longer among the living,” he says. “It’s been very wrenching for us to write, and I think it will be very wrenching for the audience to go through. “Kim and Claudia Joy have been the rock upon which we based the show,” the EP continues. “But we [have to] continue to move forward and keep the show fresh and unpredictable.”
Below, Melvoin explains how he and his fellow generals will be doing exactly that:
WHAT ABOUT ROXY? | Original cast member Sally Pressman (Roxy) will be back — but not as a series regular. “Sally, just like Kim, has been a huge part of the show’s success,” notes Wives‘ boss, adding that Pressman’s real-life pregnancy will likely limit her participation to the first couple of episodes.
WHO’S STICKING AROUND? | Melvoin confirms that Catherine Bell (Denise), Wendy Davis (Joan), Alyssa Diaz (Gloria), Kelli Williams (Jackie), J.J. Soria (Hector) and Terry Serpico (Frank) are all back as series regulars. Additionally, Claudia Joy’s widower — Michael, played by Brian McNamara — will also remain a full-timer. Beyond that, Melvoin is staying mum, in part to maintain some suspense, considering Season 6 ended with a plane carrying practically half the cast possibly crashing. “Who survives the cliffhanger and who doesn’t is going to provide a lot of the juice of the first two hours.”
NEW BLOOD | Three new female characters will be introduced, including an “18-year-old farm girl from Illinois,” an African-American mother of three who “runs the kind of house that kids and adults want to hang out in,” and a drop-dead gorgeous bad girl named Maggie who is a member of the Airborne Division. She’s also on her second marriage. “It’s the first time where we’ve done a blended marriage,” notes Melvoin. “Her second husband, who is a soldier, has a 14-year-old daughter who resents Maggie. And she’s got an 11-year-old son who’s trying to fit in.”
NEW SETTING | The common thread tying the new (and some of the existing) wives together is that their “husbands all serve in the same platoon that’s stationed in an outpost in Afghanistan,” explains Melvoin, who drew inspiration for the new setting from the acclaimed 2010 war documentary Restrepo. “The war is winding down, but that doesn’t mean what they’re doing is any less dangerous or risky.”
THE MORE THINGS CHANGE… | “We’re trying to return to the show’s roots,” Melvoin says. “The central conceit of the show is friendship that transcends rank [featuring] women from different walks of life and with very different outlooks. But it’s not going to be like you just flip the page and suddenly you’re looking at a different show… It’s the same show with some fresh new colors.”
Army Wives is slated to return in mid-2013.
Three’s company for Sally Pressman and husband David Rogers. The Army Wives actress is pregnant with her first child, Us Weekly reports.
Pressman and Rogers married last September in Santa Barbara, Calif.
In addition to Army Wives, Pressman has appeared on Criminal Minds, The New Adventures of Old Christine and in the film My Best Friend’s Girl. Her husband’s credits include Happy Endings, Bloody Sunday and The Pregnancy Pact.
Catherine Bell definitely is returning to “Army Wives,” but she says she’s not sure yet who else will.
Late last week, Lifetime gave a Season 7 renewal to the drama series, mentioning who was in the cast of the recently ended Season 6 … but not specifying which actors would be back. There’s no question Bell will continue as Denise Sherwood, since she signed a two-year deal last spring with ABC Studios, which produces the show. As for others, both she and we will see.
“I certainly don’t know,” the friendly Bell tells Zap2it. Founding co-star Kim Delaney was absent for much of the past season, while television veterans Kelli Williams and Kellie Martin joined the cast. “Those girls are so great to work with,” Bell says of the relatively new additions. “They’re such good ladies, real pros who have done this for a long time.”
Another change that might have affected production of “Army Wives” hasn’t come to pass. The filming location would have moved from Charleston, S.C., to California if the show had been granted the tax credit it sought; that ultimately didn’t happen, so the South will remain the series’ home base.
“I just moved back to L.A. when work on this last season ended,” mother-of-two Bell reports. “It certainly would have been nice to be able to stay close to home, but with the back-and-forth, the seasons go by pretty fast. Doing 13 episodes takes only five months, but it’s a long flight. You have to fly through Atlanta or Charlotte, then change planes, so it’s about an eight-hour journey.”
“JAG” alum Bell also was in Toronto recently to film two more of Hallmark Channel’s recurring “Good Witch” movies back-to-back. The first of those — “The Good Witch’s Charm” — debuts Saturday, Oct. 29, with main character Cassie facing wide exposure of her seemingly magical talents.
Hoping to take the rest of the year off, since she notes she’s been “working steadily for about six or seven years now,” Bell says “Army Wives” filming could ramp back up as soon as December … but she’s hoping for January instead. However it turns out, she’ll be glad to resume the life of Denise, who surely had her share of drama last season.
“There was a helicopter crash, and since she’s more of a nurse practictioner now, she’s getting more medical responsibilities. And she even got to hold a gun and kill a guy! I told our showrunner, ‘You know, I kind of miss doing the action stuff.’”
Army Wives will return for duty on Lifetime.
The female-skewing cable network has renewed the Kim Delaney drama for a seventh season consisting of 13 episodes.
“Army Wives is a very special program. It’s rare to find a series that connects with viewers and resonates so powerfully after six straight seasons, and we couldn’t be prouder to have it return to Lifetime next year,” Lifetime executive vp programming Rob Sharenow said Friday.
In its recently completed sixth season, the series averaged 3.2 million total viewers and ranked as ad-supported cable’s No. 1 series in its premiere time period among women 18 and up.
The series co-stars Sally Pressman, Brian McNamara, Sterling K. Brown, Wendy Davis, Drew Fuller, Terry Serpico, Kelli Williams and Catherine Bell in a story about a diverse group of women (and one man) living with their families on an active Army post and is based on the book Army Wives: The Unwritten Code of Military Marriage by Tanya Biank, who consults on the drama.
Army wives will return with a 13-episode seventh season next year.
A decision on Lifetime summer entry drama Drop Dead Diva, from Mob Doctor showrunner Josh Berman, has yet to be made.
A very popular victor from ABC’s Dancing with the Stars will make a well-deserved cameo on Lifetime’s hit drama Army Wives this season.
And the lucky hoofer to make the crossover is… J.R. Martinez!
The season 13 winner of DWTS will play a physical therapist who works with wounded veterans. As a former Army soldier and wounded veteran, Martinez’ character relates to the veterans while pushing them beyond the limits of their own expectations toward recovery.
Martinez will begin filming his guest spot next month in Charleston. The episode will air at the end of August.
The actor’s previous credits include a stint on All My Children. His win during season 13 of DWTS also marked the first win for his partner, Karina Smirnoff.
Army Wives star Catherine Bell has signed a new two-year deal with ABC Studios, which produces the veteran Lifetime drama series. The deal is qualified as a talent holding one as Army Wives has not been officially renewed beyond the current supersized sixth season. It would cover Bell’s services on the show for two more seasons, and I hear it includes a big salary bump from the actress’ current paycheck, which is in the high five figures per episode. While yet to pull the trigger on a Season 7, Lifetime has been actively exploring its options, including applying for the California TV tax credit lottery, which will be held Friday. I hear keeping the show in South Carolina for one more season and moving production to Los Angeles for two more seasons are among the discussed scenarios. None of the original cast members of Army Wives have deals beyond Season 6, and locking in Bell is a major step towards a potential renewal.
Army Wives has been key to Lifetime’s rebuilding plans. The network had originally ordered a 13-episode sixth season. But in November, while that order was still in production, it picked up 10 additional episodes, which will begin airing June 24. In addition to her back-to-back starring turns on two successful drama series, JAG and Army Wives, Bell also has a lucrative original movie franchise in Hallmark Channel’s The Good Witch. I hear Bell, repped by Gersh and Brillstein Entertainment, is closing a deal for a fifth and sixth installment in the franchise, which was launched in 2008.