The Failed Shangri-La Plaza
The star studded high production surrealistic musical sitcom shangri la plaza was originally produced as a pilot for b. nineteen ninety ninety one season but for one night only the network decided to air it as a summer fill in on july thirtieth nineteen ninety and that half hour made history. Well kind of in a really weird bad way. So we're gonna talk about the sitcom shangri la plaza. All of the weirdness that occurs around it to talk about cop rock. That was abc. Same year that this came out. It has a very cop rock field. But what is what are your reactions to this the intro. I could not tell you what it was about. If you pay me any amount of money it so abstract i guess and never mind the cheesiness. that's i expect that it's one thousand nine hundred ninety experimental. Things are a little bit weird. I was just saying that. Like i guess seinfeld came and say yeah television at that point but i could not tell. It seemed like a place. Where maybe there's food and abc live. I don't know what is highly. It's hard to tell it's it all began really with nineties. L. a. mall culture shangrila was inspired by that and it was filmed on location in north hollywood strip mall at the corner of vineland and burbank boulevard. In north hollywood california just went for it. This set a strip mall was built on top of an original strip mall which is where the problems really begin. This mall on mall design was the topic of a washington post story in nineteen ninety emmy award winning art director. Jeremy ray elton best known for his work on playhouse was responsible for the set sign. And that's not the only high-calibre name attached this very confused project. Broadway legend terrence man. Who played leads in. Layman's and cat stars as ira bondo machine mechanic who works with his brother. George jeff jaeger lanes musician love interest. John remain in seinfeld. Speaking of seinfeld at the mall's bodyshop. When amy molloy hardin yes jan on the office takes over her shitty husbands donut shop. I think after he dies. Both brothers are instantly. Smitten future smallville. Star nexium sex cult leader. Alice mac a very young l. Plays amy's precocious eight year old daughter in her only on screen acting role jazz. Great carmen lundy plays the donut shops. Only employees savion glover plays a wrapping teen commenting on. What's happening kind of greek chorus style. An oscar nominee. Chris sarandon plays the plazas landlord. It's for something where it's just a pilot of a throwaway like experimental pilot like pretty heavy hitting actors. The show itself was helmed by horror sci fi writer director nick castle. You may know him as the co writer of john. Carpenter's state from new york. And he played michael myers in the original halloween. The composers were craig sapphire or sedan known from his work. On cheers and mark mueller. Who wrote the theme song to duck tales and jennifer pages. Nine hundred ninety eight hit crush it just like there's a lot of talent involved in this project and it just gets lost along the way while working together on projects like the last starfighter tapped the trio discovered. They had a common passion. The three of us loved old musicals. Knicks dad was a choreographer who had done royal wedding and many other movies sephardim says and the opportunity to make a musical finally happened. When cassel's pal jeff sagansky became the head of cbs. He was looking for something new. Some fresh ideas for cbs program lineup castle savannah mueller who themselves the schmaltz kings were creating in la based rock opera and unique written and composed by credit on the pilot the or inspired like i said by the strip malls around the mall culture in the late eighties early nineties. Kind of creating something colorful and also their love of musicals. It's like a hat and a hat on a hat. The pitch to cbs was also pretty weird. The schmaltz kings cleared off sagansky desk and with the keyboard and two speakers. They perform songs from the show in character.