In the series, from Bert V. Royal, Jessica Biel and eOne, Holt will play one of the two lead characters, Kate, the embodiment of teenage perfection whose life is one to be envied until she mysteriously disappears. The role was played in the pilot by Mika Abdalla.
Cruel Summer, which was picked up to series in January, is described as an unconventional thriller. It takes place over three summers — 1993-95 — in a small Texas town when a beautiful popular teen, Kate (Holt), is abducted and, seemingly unrelated, a girl, Jeanette (Chiara Aurelia), goes from being a sweet, awkward outlier to the most popular girl in town and, by ’95, the most despised person in America. Each episode is told from the POV of one of the two main girls, which will have the viewers’ loyalties constantly shifting as more information is revealed.
The pilot for Cruel Summer was written/executive produced by Royal and directed/executive produced by Max Winkler. Royal executive produces the series with Iron Ocean Productions’ Biel and Michelle Purple.
Holt is becoming a mainstay on Freeform. In addition to her starring role as Dagger/Tandy Bowen on Cloak & Dagger, which aired on the network for two seasons, she headlined Freeform’s 2019 holiday movie Turkey Drop.
She is repped by Paradigm and Alex Kohner of Morris Yorn.