Wednesday, April 24, 2024

“Orange is the New Black” Fans Love the Show So Much They Sang Along to the Theme Song at Star Studded Lincoln Center Premiere


The women of “Orange is the New Black” are finally getting out of jail– series jail, that is. After 7 seasons as Netflix’s first hit, the ladies in the jump suits are having a last season.

They celebrated in style last night first at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, and then in the heart of Times Square, at a new preposterously nice hotel called the Edition on 47th St. and 7th Avenue.

All the stars came, including the show’s creator, Jenji Kohan, who also made the great series, “Weeds,” and who gets her TV genes from her famous dad, Buz Kohan (only 13 Emmy Awards). Then there was Uzo Aduba, who’s won awards for her work, as well as Laura Prepon (with actor husband Ben Foster), Kate Mulgrew, Danielle Brooks, Taylor Schilling, Alysia Reiner (with actor husband David Alan Basche), Alicia Witt, Jackie Cruz, Yael Stone, and Laverne Cox.

The fans came, too. Netflix turned the balcony at Alice Tully Hall over to them, and they filled it with tremendous enthusiasm. Not only did they cheer for their favorite stars, they also sang along with the show’s theme song, “You’ve Got Time,” by Regina Spektor. “OINTB” has a wildly devoted following. They’re going to keep streaming it over and over.

Over at the Times Square Edition, which is still under scaffolding and on a redeveloping block in the city’s dark pit of construction (don’t get me started on how Bill DeBlasio has re-wrecked TS), all the stars came in armored cars (just kidding). The hotel is actually quite spectacular, a shock of elegance for that location. Their party space was high-ceiling-ed and lovely, and the food was quite good!

I’d forgotten how much I loved “OINTB” until I watched this opening episode. Taylor Schilling’s character, Piper, upon whose book the show is loosely based (Piper Kerman, see Amazon), is out of prison but her wife, Alex (Laura Prepon) is still inside and supposedly behaving herself.  Kohan weaves their story through with dozens more as she steers the ship to a safe harbor.

How will it all end? Even Netflix chief Ted Sarandos, who was there last night, couldn’t say (he knows). But he’s on top of the world anyway as “Stranger Things 3” is booming, he’s got lots of other hits, and movies about to premiere all fall that should take him back to the Oscars.

PS Quietly skipping the red carpet last night: double Tony nominee Jeremy Pope, who just left “Ain’t Too Proud” as Eddie Kendricks just a few months after that show’s debut. Pope previously starred in “Choir Boy,” then jumped to the Temptations and got 2 noms in the same year. He looked spiffy in a black designer suit, came by himself, was not seen at the party. I’m surprised he left “Ain’t Too Proud” so soon. No word on what he’s doing next. My colleague, Wilson Morales, pointed him out to me.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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