Sucked in by tomatoes. Yep, that’s right, one recent morning I navigated to http://www.heirloomtheseries.com/ to check out the new series, “Heirloom”. Captivated by Episode 1, I couldn’t help but click on Episode 2. But now that Emily’s ditched the city life – the only life she knows – for a Sonoma farm inherited from her Uncle, what the heck will she do to support herself (and her dog Spencer) after her savings run out? Episode 3. Then 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and the final episode available, 9. Episodes range from approximately nine minutes to just over thirteen.
They’re short episodes, but I was hooked for a good hour and a half by this soft, slightly predictable, but engaging nonetheless, series based on co-creator and star, Paten Hughes’ true-life experiences.
It’ll be interesting to see where the story goes after Emily’s initial success. Will there be crop-destroying blights? A heart-wrenching breakup with her NYC boyfriend (spoiler alert) who moves to Sonoma to be near her? Or maybe he’ll take the breakup with understanding resignation when he realizes Emily loves another? Maybe they won’t break up?
Okay. So now it’s sounding like a soap opera. It’s not, really. It’s a sweet show I think you’ll enjoy, especially if you appreciate Heirloom tomatoes.
Here’s the Press Release:
With tomatoes still at their most delicious, Heirloom, an aspirational romantic comedy series about a young woman who rediscovers herself after inheriting a small plot farm in Sonoma, is available now to stream on Vimeo. It’s a heart-warming journey back to small town life and simple pleasures.
Inspired by the experience of co-creator and series star Paten Hughes, Heirloom was filmed on Hughes’ actual organic heirloom tomato farm in Sonoma and features her real produce. The new series brings together a cast whose credits span stage, screen, and television.
View the series here: http://www.heirloomtheseries.com/
Penned by the breaking rockstar-playwright-and-TV writer Bekah Brunstetter (Switched-at-Birth, American Gods) and directed by Michael Melamedoff (Weakness, Victori: The Truth Just Can’t Be One Thing) Heirloom follows down-on-her-luck actress Emily (star Paten Hughes, one of the original members of Kevin Spacey’s Old Vic New Voices Network) through a series of horrific auditions until her mom (Gossip Girl’s Margaret Colin) calls with the news that her Uncle Bob has left her his farm in Sonoma. Emily leaves her depressed writer-boyfriend in New York (played by the ingeniously sarcastic John Lavelle) to head west with her dog Spencer as she re-invents herself as a tomato farmer. Her new tomato farm soon yields new friends, new business, and a new shot at love. Heirloom also stars Ryan Cooper (upcoming Rock That Body), Pascale Armand (Tony Nomination for Eclipsed!), and Luis Vega. Tom Wopat (Dukes of Hazard) takes a turn as famed farmer Lynn Brown.
“I am so fortunate to be surrounded by an amazing cast and creative team for Heirloom and we were all inspired by the wonderful people of Healdsburg, CA where the entire story takes place,” said Hughes. “These people and this attitude are why I became an actor in the first place: passionate people living interesting and enthusiastic lives that are open and supportive and engaged. The town’s beauty is so breathtaking that your entire body is hypnotized by it.”
“At the heart of Heirloom is the spirit that Paten carries with her daily as a maker: the desire of someone who sees the world not as it is but as it could be. It is easy to look at Heirloom’s protagonist, Emily, and see only an extension of Paten. In doing so one would make many connections that are true between the character and its inspiration — Emily and Paten are both gracious, ambitious, and innocent without ever being naive.
But in bringing to life the character of Emily, Paten and her co-creator Bekah Brunstetter have landed on something greater than a stand-in for the show’s star. They’ve tapped into the restless, empowering and endearing energy of the millennial generation: a group of young women and men who see a world without fixed boundaries, and who have alchemized this fluidity to create enthusiastic new opportunities,” said Michael Melamedoff. He helmed an all-female camera crew in the Sonoma unit, cinematography by Kat Westergaard(Lovesong, Sundance 2016), production design by Angel Herrera, and featuring original music by Laura Brenneman.
The launch is sponsored by Avalon Ventures, Emerald Textiles, and RHH Consulting.
Series Stars Paten Hughes, Margaret Colin, Tom Wopat, Ryan Cooper, John Lavelle, Luis Vega and Pascale Armand
Julie Crosby, Paten Hughes, Kevin Kinsella, James Richard, and Brooke Stevens are producers.
All nine episodes of Heirloom are available now for binge viewing on Vimeo: