HOLLYWOOD—“Family Dinner” is the delicious Internet series that was created by Lauralee Bell and Scott Martin. Lauralee is best known as Christine Blair Williams on the CBS soap opera “The Young and the Restless,” but is now becoming well known as the original desperate housewife Karen, who has the most dysfunctional family in America. The Oprah Winfreyobsessed diva recently had a musical therapist arrive at her dinner party given at Cravings Restaurant in the Sunset Plaza shopping center in West Hollywood. The therapist was played by Academy Award® winner Shirley Jones, who was surprised to meet a family from hell. The former “Partridge Family” mom left the family with indigestion, but the star herself left feeling like she’d just enjoyed a four-course gourmet meal.
Karen is described by fans as over the top; however, she’s not alone. With a horny grandmother played by Academy Award® winning actress Cloris Leachman, a mother-inlaw that can’t keep her mouth shut, played by Hollywood icon Phyllis Diller and a husband who never gets sex or really a quiet meal with his family, played by Emmy Award® winning actor Aaron Lustig, fans can be assured that this family has a lot more to share with viewers. After the fifth episode recently aired, Showtime Television began promoting it’s new series “Shameless” as the most dysfunctional family series ever.
William H. Macy is an amazing talent, but he’s no Dan Cortese, who is not only handsome, funny and quick-witted, but a terrific writer as well. Dan plays the gate crashing reporter, who is trying to find a niche for Karen’s new-age styled family and is constantly caught in the middle of verbal food fights in the home.
Bell’s Karen is a new twist on Morticia Addams (“The Addams Family") and Peg Bundy (“Married With Children”), while Aaron Lustig is the 21st century version of Al Bundy (“Married With Children”). The entire cast and crew are comprised of some of Hollywood’s most talented players. Lauralee Bell is not only the beautiful face of the series, but in the most recent webisode she also was director and writer of the webisode. Scott Martin and Ms. Bell also shared executive producing duties, which is reminiscent of Bell’s creative and iconic parents William (Bill) J. Bell and Lee Phillip Bell, who co-created and co-executive produced “The Young and the Restless” and “The Bold and the Beautiful.” Those two series hold the number one and number two spots respectively in the daytime Nielsen ratings.
Shirley Jones recently told Canyon News, “It’s an extraordinary series. I had no idea prior to doing this show what webisodes were, but I loved it. And the Martin Bell Production team is so professional and make things easy for their talent.”
“Family Dinner” is the series that belongs on television. Sure fans of Showtime Television are excited about the upcoming series “Shameless,” and CBS viewers still love the quirky hit sitcom “Two and a Half Men,” but the viewing public is desperate for a character driven series that lampoons the family, but offers original storylines that can make them laugh. That’s what this 2010 Webby award-nominated series does for the millions of viewers who enjoy the show online.
“Family Dinner” is a tasty morsel of family dysfunction without the need for antacids. The show can be seen at familydinneronline.com.
Photographs are Courtesy: Hutchins Photo Agency
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