TLC Picks Up SallyAnn Salsano Unscripted Series About South Boston Women (Exclusive)
TLC is getting in to business with Jersey Shore creator SallyAnn Salsano. The Discovery Communications-owned network that airs Sister Wives, one of Salsano’s favorite shows, has ordered a docuseries from Salsano about working-class women in South Boston.
Southie Pride, which is currently in production, follows five women struggling to make a life for their families in the notoriously insular and hardscrabble Boston neighborhood. Boston was one of myriad locations that was pitched by reality producers as a setting for Jersey Shore knock offs after that show became a huge hit. But Southie Pride is not a Jersey Shore redux. Rather, it seems to have more in common with the Bravo's Real Housewives, though without the trappings of wealth and celebrity.
TLC has ordered eight episodes of Southie Pride, which is still casting but is set for a fall debut. And crews were filming Sunday during the New England Patriots’ heartbreaking defeat by the New York Giants in the Super Bowl.
“Spend some time with the women of South Boston and you quickly learn that pride runs deep, family comes first, and that their friendships and rivalries are forever,” says Salsano. “And, their accents are wicked awesome.”
Southie has been the setting of multiple Hollywood films, including Ben Affleck and Matt Damon’s Good Will Hunting and Martin Scorsese’s The Departed. And the capture last summer of infamous Southie crime boss James “Whitey” Bulger after 16 years evading federal authorities, thrust the town back into the national spotlight. Damon and Affleck are in development on a big-screen adaptation of the Bulger narrative, though fellow Boston native Mark Wahlberg also has expressed interest in the story.
Southie Pride is produced by Salsano’s 495 Productions.