“The difference with ‘Veronica Mars’ is, the creator of the show and the star of the show already had an idea, a conversation and a plan and launched that together,” Graham explained following the Television Critics Association (TCA) Press Tour panel for her current show, “Parenthood.” She said she’d heard there were some conversations about a “Gilmore Girls” movie, but “that was a while ago.” When Graham was out promoting her best-selling “Someday, Someday, Maybe” novel and communicating with fans via Twitter earlier this year, she got a lot of inquiries about bringing her former show to the big screen, “and I was like, ‘Oh, wow. They need answers and I just done have them. I just wonder if it wasn’t one of those – “ she trailed off. “I’ve never said no, I’ve always said ‘I don’t know,’ because I don’t.”
Graham has been in touch with her “Gilmore Girls” daughter, Alexis Bledel, recently – but not because of anything pertaining to their show. Graham’s former on-camera love, Jason Ritter, will now be seen as Alexis’ love match on Fox’s forthcoming “Us & Them.” Awkward!
“It was freaky to me when I first heard it, but we’re all friends,” she said. She also thought, “Oh, good, they’ll have a good time and really like each other. It’s a funny thing. It actually brought us back in touch a little bit, Alexis and I. She was like, ‘Did I take your guy?’” she laughed. “You know. He should have his own show and he’s so good. It’s been fun to be back in touch with her, and it reminds us that, you know, this is a small community and of course paths cross.”
Graham’s currently at work scripting the TV adaptation of “Someday, Someday, Maybe” (the project she deems “my baby”) which is going to be produced by Ellen DeGeneres’ production company. And she is, of course, at work on “Parenthood.” She, along with the rest of the “Parenthood” team, was glad to see the acclaimed series getting such a nice showcase at TCA when going into its fifth season, especially since it is unusual for an older show to get that kind of support.
HERE AND THERE: We got a kick out of seeing Tony Shalhoub and Jerry O’Connell “We Are Men” CBS show the other day. How egalitarian of them! The two nice-guy stars are favorites of a lot of press and publicists. We just wish that “We Are Men” was a better show.
MEANINGFUL MEMORIES: Kellita Smith, a.k.a. First Lady Katherine Johnson in the nationally syndicated sitcom “The First Family,” still tears up when talking about her late “Bernie Mac Show” cast mate and mentor, Bernie Mac.
“The beautiful thing is, we had him every day for five years,” says the beautiful actress, who played Mac’s wife on the popular sitcom. “He gave me gifts that have lasted.” Those include a lesson in a level of perseverance most people can barely imagine.
“It took 35 years for him to become a household name,” she points out. There were times when career frustrations got to her, when she found herself asking, “’What do I need? Do I need ruby slippers or house slippers? What is it?’ When I wanted to pull the covers over my head,” she recalls with a laugh. But Mac’s example made a difference.
Kellita was recognized with an NAACP Image Award nomination earlier this year for her portrayal of a dignified-yet-with-it First Lady who bears a certain resemblance to today’s White House occupant. (That’s in addition to the four Image Award noms she received for her portrayal of Wanda on “The Bernie Mac Show.”) Asked whether her job comes with a certain amount of pressure to carry the image across properly, she says no. “I feel the pride and the honor that comes with representing the woman in the White House.” And, she admits with a laugh, “It’s an opportunity to be poised and polished – which is not what I’m like in real life.”