UnREAL just wrapped up an unfortunate sophomore slump, but that won’t stop Lifetime from boosting its scripted programming (or from giving UnREAL another chance, for that matter). According to Variety, the network that delivered this summer’s premier queer vampire movie has ordered a pilot for a new anthology series called A Midsummer’s Nightmare. The show already has one thing going for it: It’s an anthology series that isn’t helmed by Ryan Murphy.
A Midsummer’s Nightmare is an hour-long psychological thriller based loosely on Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. But wait! There’s a modern-day twist! The series unfolds from the perspective of Elena, a young woman who gets swept up in a summer getaway that quickly turns into (you guessed it) a summer nightmare. Four young lovers head to the woods in pursuit of romance and sexy times (never a good idea), but are soon targeted by evil forces (duh) that use their own fantasies and secrets against them.
“We’re really taking big swings at Lifetime and developing content that redefines what it means to be a Lifetime show. A Midsummer’s Nightmare is unlike anything Lifetime has ever done before,” said Liz Gateley, executive vice president and head of programming for Lifetime. Hopefully by “unlike anything Lifetime has ever done before,” Gateley means good horror.
The pilot was written by The Shallows writer Anthony Jaswinski, who will also serve as co-executive producer. Jeff Kwatinetz (Royal Pains) and Josh Barry (Salem) will executive produce. None of those names spark any kind of excitement, but hey, again, at least this isn’t just another Ryan Murphy project that will be good for approximately one season before spiraling into madness. American Horror Story has turned into the stunt queen of television, with its fake promos intended to fuck with people. But aren’t we all a little sick of AHS playing games? Maybe the world needs a new horror anthology series to shake things up. AHS still has Sarah Paulson going for it, but that’s about it. Help us, Lifetime. You’re our only hope.