Lifetime’s film based on the College Admissions Scandal has cast its leads. On March 12, headlines surged across the nation reading that Fuller House’s Lori Loughlin and Desperate Housewives’ Felicity Huffman had been indicted in the nation’s largest college admissions scheme. In July, Lifetime greenlit a two-hour film that will fictionalize the events of the high-profile scandal.
Orchestrated by William Rick Singer, the college admissions scheme allowed for parents to pay large sums of money to fraudulently inflate test scores and bribe college officials to admit their children into prestigious universities. Coined Operation Varsity Blues, the scandal broke open months ago to reveal over 50 elite individuals were involved. Loughlin and Huffman were the two most shocking names to be disclosed. Since news of the scandal broke, the careers of the actresses have been permanently altered. Otherhood’s Huffman pleaded guilty to her charges and her sentencing is scheduled for September 13. Following her termination from the Hallmark Channel and Fuller House, Loughlin pleaded not guilty to mail fraud and money laundering charges and awaits a trial date. Lifetime opted to fast track their made-for-tv movie with a potential fall release. Now, the cable network has announced the leads for the upcoming film.
According to EW, The College Admissions Scandal has tapped Penelope Ann Miller (Riverdale, American Crime), Mia Kirshner (The L Word, Star Trek: Discovery), and Michael Shanks (Stargate: Atlantis) for starring roles. Miller and Kirscher will not embody Loughlin and Huffman specifically, but rather, play roles based on them. Lifetime’s version of events will follow two wealthy mothers Caroline (Miller), an interior designer and Bethany (Kirshner), an owner of a successful financial services firm. Caroline and Bethany join forces with charismatic college admissions consultant Rick Singer (Shanks) to override the system and fulfill their dreams of getting their teenagers into a prestigious institution.
The College Admissions Scandal is in the creative hands of director Adam Salky, with a script by Stephen Tolkin. Production is set to begin this month. The College Admissions Scandal will premiere as part of Lifetime’s Ripped From the Headlines movie slate. Original films on the roster will present harrowing true stories in a dramatized fashion. Along with The College Admissions Scandal, films will include Escaping the NXIVM Cult: A Mother’s Fight to Save Her Daughter, Abducted: The Mary Stauffer Story, and Trapped: The Alex Cooper Story.
Lifetime’s announcement of a film based on the college admissions scandal garnered buzz that the story would follow Loughlin and Huffman, not composite characters. However, Lifetime certainly nods to the two as Miller previously worked with Huffman, and Kirscher and Miller bear a resemblance to Loughlin and Huffman. The college admissions scandal is a hot commodity. It was only a matter of time before miniseries, documentaries, and films were made about the events that unfolded. As it stands, the nation awaits the fate of Loughlin and Huffman, and viewers await The College Admissions Scandal.