'Drop Dead Diva' Makes Beautiful Music

Drop_Dead_Diva_Brooke_Elliott_full.jpgWhen you hire a Broadway star for your primetime comedy-drama, even if she's playing a lawyer, you know there's going to be some singing and dancing.

Sometimes, the star provides the entertainment, but it certainly doesn't have to stop there.

On Lifetime's "Drop Dead Diva," airing Sundays, Brooke Elliott stars as Jane, a plus-size lawyer who passed through death's door then was shoved right back into the land of the living -- but now with her mind and body inhabited by the spirit of Deb, a fashion-forward blonde who was none too happy to find herself a zaftig brunette.

Over the show's first season and now into its second, Jane has struggled to reconcile the parts of her personality and life that are Jane and the parts that are Deb. Along the way, music has frequently broken out, resulting in a CD of tunes from the show.

Among the music is an original song called "Begin Again," which was incorporated into the episode that aired on July 18. The show shot an accompanying music video that has garnered a lot of views on YouTube.



But there's more to come, as says executive producer Josh Berman, in a Q&A below (questions in bold; answers in blue). Enjoy!

Describe to me the process of having this song written for the show.

 

We wanted to write a story about a young pop group and needed a song to fit perfectly into the story. We approached our composer, Scott Starrett, and singer song-writer Jasmine Smith-Howard with our concept for the song entitled "Begin Again." Two weeks later, they came back to us with a song that far exceeded every our wildest expectations. It played on so many levels and worked beautifully in the episode. Our director liked it so much that he shot an entire music video, which is now on YouTube. It caught on like wildfire.  

 

How much more original music is planned?

 

The response has been great, so we do plan more. We're lucky that the fans have embraced the musical component of the show. We even launched a CD which is now available on Amazon.com and iTunes. We've been in the top 10 of Amazon's TV CDs since our release on June 1st, and the comments about the CD are pretty terrific.

 

How important has music become to the series as a whole?

 

It elevates the show and makes it even more special and fun to watch.   

 

Is there any way of incorporating even more of Brooke's musical talent into the show?

 

Brooke has an extraordinary voice, and is a wonderful dancer as well. We have some surprises in store for the remainder of the season, but I don't want to give anything away. My favorite musical number will launch our two-hour season finale on August 28th. It's fantastic.

 

What is the biggest way the show has changed since the premiere, and the biggest way in which it hasn't?

 

Jane is more comfortable in her body. She's begun to realize that she can still achieve all her dreams despite not being a size zero. That being said, there are still obstacles and surprises at ever turn that make Jane re-examine her life. I think she's becoming more introspective in some ways but also living life to the fullest at the same time.

 

Do you have some hints for upcoming episodes?

 

Oh, there are lots of surprises. And if you thought last season's cliffhanger was big, this is even more shocking and life-changing for our characters!