Netflix has started production on Dash & Lily, an eight-episode holiday romantic comedy series, from Shawn Levy’s 21 Laps and Nick Jonas’ Image 32. It marks the fifth Netflix series for Levy, who signed one of the first big overall deals with the streamer and has emerged as one of its most prolific producers.
Austin Abrams (Euphoria, This Is Us) and Midori Francis (Good Boys) lead the cast of the half-hour series, based on the YA book series Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares from authors Rachel Cohn and David Levithan. It also includes series regulars Dante Brown (Lethal Weapon, MA) and Troy Iwata (Broadway’s Be More Chill, New Amsterdam) and recurring Keana Marie (Huge in France), James Saito (Always Be My Maybe), and Jodi Long (Sullivan & Son).
Described as a whirlwind Holiday romance, the series revolves around cynical Dash (Abrams) and optimistic Lily (Francis) who trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations all across New York City, finding they have more in common with each other than they would have expected.
Dash & Lily reunites Levy and Jonas who worked together in Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian, directed and produced by Levy and featuring Jonas and his brothers.
Joe Tracz (Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events) is writer, executive producer and showrunner for Dash & Lily. Levy and Josh Barry executive produce for 21 Laps and Jonas for Image 32 Cohn and Levithan co-executive produce.
Brad Silberling (A Series of Unfortunate Events) will direct and executive produce the first two episodes Fred Savage and Pamela Romanowsky (Riverdale) also will direct. Filming has started in New York for a 2020 premiere.
“The most essential quality of 21 Laps shows and films is heart, and Dash & Lily has that quality in spades,” said 21 Laps principal Levy. “This show is inspiring to us and promises to give audiences a uniquely romantic and entertaining New York City holiday adventure.”
Dash & Lily joins 21 Laps’ Stranger Things, recently renewed for a fourth season, and the upcoming I Am Not Okay With This, Shadow and Bone and an Unsolved Mysteries reboot.
Additionally, the company has several series in development, including All The Light We Cannot See, a limited series based on Anthony Doerr’s Pulitzer Prize-winning bestseller.
On the feature side, Levy is working with Tracz on developing a movie adaptation of the musical Be More Chill
Here are details about the characters in Dash & Lily:
Dash, played by Austin Abrams: Dash is an only child born and raised in New York City. He is a smart and cynical teenager whose maturity, wisdom and sophistication are advanced for his age. Barely tolerating the forced merriment of the holidays, he’d prefer to be alone watching depressing foreign films. Dash can be quite charming, despite his sour feelings on the holiday season.
Lily, played by Midori Francis: Lily is a smart and hopeful New York City teen with a stubborn optimism and youthful energy. Despite her bubbly and passionate demeanor, she possesses a raw and honest vulnerability. The holidays are her favorite time of year, and this holiday season, Lily is looking for love.
Boomer, played by Dante Brown: Boomer’s easygoing nature and unsinkable enthusiasm makes him an unlikely BFF to Dash. Full of big ideas and plans (often concocted from behind the counter of the pizza parlor/video store where he works), he’s a loyal friend and a good listener who’s always down for adventure.
Langston, played by Troy Iwata: Lily’s older brother Langston is romantic, impulsive, and just a little immature. Having dropped out of college after experiencing his first heartbreak, he’ll happily give his sister advice on boys, but could stand to take some advice himself.
Sofia, played by Keana Marie: Dash’s old flame is thoughtful, serene and intelligent with a great sense of style. A sophisticated world traveler, her return to New York provides complications for Dash and Lily.
Arthur, played by James Saito: Lily’s loving but overprotective grandfather is an old-school New Yorker who’s as devoted to his family as he is allergic to compromise and change.
Mrs. Basil E, played by Jodi Long: Lily’s eccentric, theatrical great-aunt is a grand dame of Broadway, and the inspiration for her niece’s free-spirited ways.