Image Credit: Prathi Srinivasan, Briana White and Christy Choi who play the lead characters on Wasted, courtesy of wastedTVshow.com
The pilot for new lesbian TV series Wasted exceeded its crowdfunding target in 24 hours and is set to shoot in January.
Created by Joshua Levy and Prathi Srinivasan, who write for CW show iZombie, Wasted is a half-hour thriller about three first-year college girls – Blake, June and Lydia- whose roommate Kelsey is found hanged in the closet. The girls find Kelsey's hidden laptop and decide to unravel the truth about what happened to their friend.
As they start investigating Kelsey’s death, virgin June and hard partying Blake, who both came to college with no clue about their sexual identities, find themselves falling for each other, while Lydia’s involvement in Kelsey’s death threatens to destroy her perfectly curated life.
Co-writer Prathi is also a talented actor and is taking on the role of June, while actress and well-known gamer Briana White is Blake and Christy Choi plays Lydia.
Both Joshua, a half-Asian, half-Jewish gay man who grew up in Texas and Prathi, an immigrant from India, came through the HBO writing fellowship, which provides mentorship for diverse storytellers. Their time in the program resulted in HBO pilot F**cked Up, about an Asian nerd hoping to get laid on her first day in college, but lacking the social skills to do so.
Image Credit: Briana White, Prathi Srinivasan and Christy Choi from Wasted, courtesy of wastedTVshow.com
"We continue to champion diversity because we believe people are tired of the same old stuff and want something fresh," Josh told me via email from LA. For Wasted, they “chose to write about LGBT characters because we were so tired of never seeing ourselves on screen."
“There are a huge amount of mysteries/thrillers out there, but only a handful star LGBT characters, and even less are characters of color," Josh says, noting that on Wasted the cast are all either LGBT or people of color and the executive producer is “a proud black woman.” There will also be a diverse crew behind the screen and Joshua is taking on directing duties.
He promises plenty of angst, longing, and steamy hook-ups with the central relationship, as “Blake realizes she's attracted to other women, specifically her best friend and roommate, June. June is questioning her identity, and their relationship becomes this sexy push and pull that may not end the way you think.”
Joshua has plenty of drama from his university days to draw on for this Gen Z love story. “I know when I was in college, I absolutely fell in love with my best friend, and those were the most heart-wrenching years of my life.”
I asked him why he chose to create such a female-centric show?
“It's funny, my cowriter and I never even considered having a male lead. I think we were both drawn to the fact that this series is about three girls and the relationships they have with each other.”
Whilst crowdfunding has exceeded the original target, they are still raising funds to ensure the pilot for Wasted is as good as can be. As Lydia likes to “dress like she’s in Crazy Rich Asians” and Joshua and Prathi want the show to look like a stylish noir thriller, it’s going to cost a bit! There are some fabulous perks to donating, including the opportunity for your face to appear somewhere on the show and tickets to the premiere and afterparty in LA.