I'm sometimes preoccupied with wondering what it would have been like to grow up in New York. A Columbia student I know who grew up on the Upper East Side says I romanticize his life (to a degree I suspect he finds annoying) when I imagine erudite discourse around the family dinner table, Saturday mornings spent playing soccer in Central Park, a high school packed with cool kids all bound for the Ivy League. He's right: I do have a romantic notion about being a teenager in New York. The key word is teenager: No matter where you are, being a teenager just has that built-in Life Sucks factor.
Anyone But Me is a new Web series that offers a fresh and frank perspective on coming of age in New York in the post-9/11 world. It doesn't romanticize; it's got plenty of the Life Sucks factor. It also has plenty of humor, drama, hope and relevance.
At this point, it's only fair for me to disclose that I'm the producer of the show, which was created, written and directed by award-winning filmmaker Tina Cesa Ward. Susan Miller, an Obie award-winning playwright (My Left Breast) who was a consulting producer/writer for Showtime's groundbreaking The L Word and ABC's landmark series thirtysomething (among myriad other hit television shows), is the Executive Producer and co-writer.
In the first episode, which premieres on Monday, December 8, on StrikeTV, 16-year-old Vivian McMillan, the daughter of a NYC firefighter, is forced to move from the city to Westchester County due to her father's health problems, the result of 9/11. She's uncertain about how to be herself in her new suburban school, missing her friends in the city, a bit unnerved by the sudden motherly attentiveness of her aunt. In a word (or two): Life sucks.
Watch the trailer at our Web site and be sure to tune in for Monday's series premiere on StrikeTV.