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‘Charmed’ Behind-The-Scenes Drama: A Timeline Of The Biggest Cast Feuds Over The Years

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For nearly two decades, a steady stream of drama has erupted between ‘Charmed’ stars Alyssa Milano, Rose McGowan, Shannen Doherty and Holly Marie Combs. Here’s a breakdown of all those feuds.

Charmed may have aired its last episode in 2006, but fans are still hearing about the drama between its co-stars to this day. Before all the Twitter wars and bitter interviews, however, the WB series kicked off in 1998 with its three leading stars — Alyssa Milano, Holly Marie Combs and Shannen Doherty — playing the Halliwell witches who discover they’re extremely powerful (yet good) witches.

Alyssa Milano, Holly Marie Combs, Shannen Doherty
Pictured above, from left to right: Alyssa Milano, Holly Marie Combs and Shannen Doherty, who played the Halliwell witch sisters on Charmed. (The WB)

In the beginning, there seemed to be no bad blood. Holly and Shannen were bridesmaids at Alyssa’s wedding to Cinjuna Tate, whom the bride split with 10 months later. Then, in 1999, Alyssa only had high praise for her co-stars in an E! special (per Yahoo): “I feel that we’re incredibly lucky that the three of us found each other. We all have horses so we all have things that are in common. Holly and I keep our horses at the same ranch so we go riding all the time together and we’re very similar and, um, very close, we’re blessed in that way. It’s like a big slumber party every day. We giggle a lot.”

Those sentiments changed throughout the years, however. Let’s look back at how the feuds between the stars of Charmed developed over time:

2001: Shannen Doherty Suddenly Leaves The Show

Shannen Doherty, Holly Marie Combs
Shannen Doherty (right) and Holly Marie Combs (left) at the 2001 premiere of Ocean’s Eleven. (MEGA)

Shannen’s character, Prue Halliwell, died in the Season 3 finale called “All Hell Breaks Loose” — which is the perfect analogy of what actually happened in real life after Shannen’s departure. The Beverly Hills, 90210 alum did not hide her dissatisfaction in interviews after her exit, telling Entertainment Tonight in 2001, “I want to work with actors who really, really care and that want to be there every single day. I don’t want to work with people who b-tch about their job and complain about it and say that they hate it or anything else.”

At the time, there were reports that Shannen and Alyssa weren’t exactly getting along. Before Season 4 premiered, Alyssa acknowledged this tension by telling Entertainment Weekly, “I think it’s hard when you put…two very different people together. I’m very laid-back and passive…[Shannen’s] got a lot of energy, she’s very headstrong, she wants to get the job done…I think it’s unfortunate that she left, and that she needed to bad-mouth everyone involved and the audience. She sounds really angry. I just hope I didn’t contribute to that anger.”

Meanwhile, in the same interview, Holly’s response to Shannen’s send-off was less tinged with drama. After all, the two had already been friends before filming Charmed together. “It was done very poorly, in my opinion,” Holly admitted, referring to the tragic death of Shannen’s character at the end of Season 3. She added, “We should have had an opportunity to have her character, Prue, make a graceful exit and have our story writers properly plan for that.”

2013: Alyssa Milano Compares The Set Of ‘Charmed’ To A High School

Twelve years later, fans were given more answers as to what exactly happened between Alyssa and Shannen. On Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen in 2013, Alyssa admitted that they “never really found out what happened” in regards to Shannen’s exit from the show, but did say this: “I can tell you that we were on the air with her for three years, and there were definitely some rough days.”

She went into further detail, adding, “I never went to a high school because I was tutored on the set, but I imagine it would have been a lot like that. Holly and Shannen were best friends for like 10 years before the show started, so it was very much sort of like high school. I would hope that in our thirties it wouldn’t be like that anymore.”

Holly was apparently tuning in, because she clapped back on Twitter! “I went to high school. It was a very important job to me and always will be,” the actress for the middle Halliwell sister wrote.

However, Alyssa now appears to be on good terms with Shannen, and even wrote that she’s holding her former co-star and rival “tight in [her] heart” after Shannen’s cancer returned in early 2020.

2017: A New Feud Forms In The Wake Of The #MeTooMovement

While Alyssa was known for her feud with Shannen, by the late 2010’s, her feud with a different co-star — Rose McGowan — came to center stage. Rose played Alyssa’s half-sister, Paige Matthews, and served as Shannen’s replacement on Charmed between 2001-2006. But in 2017, she infamously tweeted that Alyssa made her want to “vomit” after seeing her co-star still stand by Georgina Chapman, the wife of film producer Harvey Weinstein (whom Rose had accused of rape).

2018: Rose McGowan Calls Alyssa Milano A “Lie”

Rose further condemned Alyssa amid the #MeTooMovement, despite both stars being the main celebrity faces behind the exposure of Hollywood’s alleged sexual assault predators. Rose was wary of Alyssa’s advocacy, and explained why in a 2018 interview with Nightline that went viral.

“I don’t like her,” Rose told Nightline host JuJu Chang. She then referenced Alyssa’s husband Dave Bugliari, who used to be an agent for the Creative Arts Agency (CAA): “Do you think I don’t know these people? Do the math. Who’s behind Time’s Up? CAA. Where do they meet? CAA? Who needs good PR? CAA. Who are part of the pimp problem? CAA.”

2020: Alyssa Milano Reignites Feud With Rose McGowan

After the 2020 Democratic National Convention wrapped up, Rose criticized the political party by tweeting in Aug. 2020, “What have the Democrats done to solve ANYTHING? Help the poor? No. Help black & brown people? No. Stop police brutality? No. Help single mothers? No. Help children? No. You have achieved nothing. NOTHING. Why did people vote [Donald] Trump? Because of you motherf-kers.”

Alyssa quickly snapped back with a Twitter thread, pointing out all of the Democratic party’s accomplishments since 1920. The clapback didn’t come out of nowhere, though, since Rose had already called out Alyssa’s support of Joe Biden earlier that year, despite the Democratic presidential nominee facing and denying a sexual assault allegation from his former Senate staffer, Tara Reade.

This ignited a spark in Rose, who had multiple bones to pick with Alyssa. She accused her co-star of stealing the #metoo saying from activist Tarana Burke (who started the original movement in 2006), and also accused Alyssa of creating a “toxic” environment on the Charmed set.

“You stole #metoo (a brilliant communication tool, not a movement) from Tarana. You co-opted my movement, the Cultural Reset, for fame, jealous of me for outing my rapist,” she tweeted, adding, “You made 250k per week on Charmed…You threw a fit in front of the crew, yelling, ‘They don’t pay me enough to do this shit!’ Appalling behavior on the daily. I cried every time we got renewed because you made that set toxic AF. Now, get off my coattails you f-king fraud.”

Rose later revealed that Alyssa had blocked her on Twitter, making their Twitter war come to a standstill.

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Netflix is developing a live action ‘Assassin’s Creed’ show

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Netflix announced this morning that it’s partnering with Ubisoft to adapt the game publisher’s “Assassin’s Creed” franchise into a live action series.

The franchise jumps around in history, telling the story of a secret society of assassins with “genetic memory” and their centuries-long battle the knights templar. It has sold 155 million games worldwide and was also turned into a nearly incomprehensible 2016 film starring Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard, which underperformed at the box office.

The companies say that they’re currently looking for a showrunner. Jason Altman and Danielle Kreinik of Ubisoft’s film and television division will serve as executive producers. (In addition to working on adaptations of Ubisoft’s intellectual property, the publisher is also involved in the Apple TV+ industry comedy “Mythic Quest.”)

“We’re excited to partner with Ubisoft and bring to life the rich, multilayered storytelling that Assassin’s Creed is beloved for,” said Netflix’s vice president of original series Peter Friedlander in a statement. “From its breathtaking historical worlds and massive global appeal as one of the best selling video game franchises of all time, we are committed to carefully crafting epic and thrilling entertainment based on this distinct IP and provide a deeper dive for fans and our members around the world to enjoy.”

It sounds like there could be follow-up shows as well, with the announcement saying that Netflix and Ubisoft will “tap into the iconic video game’s trove of dynamic stories with global mass appeal for adaptations of live action, animated, and anime series.”

Netflix recently placed an eight-episode order for “Resident Evil,” another video game franchise that was previously adapted for the big screen. And it also had a big hit with its adaptation of “The Witcher,” which is based on a fantasy book series that was popularized via video games.

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Original Content podcast: ‘Lovecraft Country’ is gloriously bonkers

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As we tried to recap the first season of HBO’s “Lovecraft Country,” one thing became clear: The show is pretty nuts.

The story begins by sending Atticus “Tic” Freeman (Jonathan Majors), his friend Leti Lewis (Jurnee Smolett) and his uncle George (Courtney B. Vance) on a road trip across mid-’50s America in search of Tic’s missing father. You might assume that the search will occupy the entire season, or take even longer than that; instead, the initial storyline is wrapped up quickly.

And while there’s a story running through the whole season, most of the episodes are relatively self-contained, offering their own versions on various horror and science fiction tropes. There’s a haunted house episode, an Indiana Jones episode, a time travel episode and more.

The show isn’t perfect — the writing can be clunky, the special effects cheesy and cheap-looking. But at its best, it does an impressive job of mixing increasingly outlandish plots, creepy monsters (with plentiful gore) and a healthy dose of politics.

After all, “Lovecraft Country” (adapted form a book by Matt Ruff) is named after notoriously racist horror writer H.P. Lovecraft, but it focuses almost entirely on Black characters, making the case that old genres can be reinvigorated with diverse casts and a rethinking of political assumptions.

In addition to reviewing the show, the latest episode of the Original Content podcast also includes a discussion of Netflix earnings, the new season of “The Bachelorette” and the end of Quibi.

You can listen in the player below, subscribe using Apple Podcasts or find us in your podcast player of choice. If you like the show, please let us know by leaving a review on Apple. You can also follow us on Twitter or send us feedback directly. (Or suggest shows and movies for us to review!)

And if you’d like to skip ahead, here’s how the episode breaks down:
0:00 Intro
0:36 Netflix discussion
3:18 “The Bachelorette”
6:30 Quibi
14:35 “Lovecraft Country” review
31:32 “Lovecraft Country” spoiler discussion

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The short, strange life of Quibi

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“All that is left now is to offer a profound apology for disappointing you and, ultimately, for letting you down,” Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman wrote, closing out an open letter posted to Medium. “We cannot thank you enough for being there with us, and for us, every step of the way.”

With that, the founding executives confirmed the rumors and put Quibi to bed, a little more than six months after launching the service.

Starting a business is an impossibly difficult task under nearly any conditions, but even in a world that’s littered with high-profile failures, the streaming service’s swan song was remarkable for both its dramatically brief lifespan and the amount of money the company managed to raise (and spend) during that time.

A month ahead of its commercial launch, Quibi announced that it had raised another $750 million. That second round of funding brought the yet-to-launch streaming service’s funding up to $1.75 billion — roughly the same as the gross domestic product of Belize, give or take $100 million.

“We concluded a very successful second raise which will provide Quibi with a strong cash runway,” CFO Ambereen Toubassy told the press at the time. “This round of $750 million gives us tremendous flexibility and the financial wherewithal to build content and technology that consumers embrace.”

Quibi’s second funding round brought the yet-to-launch streaming service’s funding up to $1.75 billion — roughly the same as the gross domestic product of Belize, give or take $100 million.

From a financial perspective, Quibi had reason to be hopeful. Its fundraising ambitions were matched only by the aggressiveness with which it planned to spend that money. At the beginning of the year, Whitman touted the company’s plans to spend up to $100,000 per minute of programming — $6 million per hour. The executive proudly contrasted the jaw-dropping sum to the estimated $500 to $5,000 an hour spent by YouTube creators.

For Whitman and Katzenberg — best known for their respective reigns at HP and Disney — money was key to success in an already crowded marketplace. $1 billion was a drop in the bucket compared to the $17.3 billion Netflix was expected to spend on original content in 2020, but it was a start.

Following in the footsteps of Apple, who had also recently announced plans to spend $1 billion to launch its own fledgling streaming service, the company was enlisting A-List talent, from Steven Spielberg, Guillermo del Toro and Ridley Scott to Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Lopez and LeBron James. If your name carried any sort of clout in Hollywood boardrooms, Quibi would happily cut you a check, seemingly regardless of content specifics.

Quibi’s strategy primarily defined itself by itself by its constraints. In hopes of attracting younger millennial and Gen Z, the company’s content would be not just mobile-first, but mobile-only. There would be no smart TV app, no Chromecast or AirPlay compatibility. Pricing, while low compared to the competition, was similarly off-putting. After a 90-day free trial, $4.99 got you an ad-supported subscription. And boy howdy, were there ads. Ads upon ads. Ads all the way down. Paying another $3 a month would make them go away.

Technological constraints and Terms of Service fine print forbade screen shots — a fundamental understanding of how content goes viral in 2020 (though, to be fair, one shared with other competing streaming services). Amusingly, the inability to share content led to videos like this one of director Sam Raimi’s perplexingly earnest “The Golden Arm.”

It features a built-on laugh track from viewers as Emmy winner Rachel Brosnahan lies in a hospital bed after refusing to remove a golden prosthetic. It’s an allegory, surely, but not one intentionally played for laughs. Many of the videos that did ultimately make the rounds on social media were regarded as a curiosity — strange artifacts from a nascent streaming service that made little sense on paper.

Most notable of all, however, were the “quick bites” that gave the service its confusingly pronounced name. Each program would be served in 5-10 minute chunks. The list included films acquired by the service, sliced up into “chapters.” Notably, the service didn’t actually purchase the content outright; instead, rights were set to revert to their creators after seven years. Meanwhile, after two years, content partners were able to “reassemble” the chunks back into a movie for distribution.

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