‘Cruel Summer’ Creator Bert V. Royal Exits Freeform Drama

By Peter White, Alexandra Del Rosario

Cruel Summer
Freeform/Frank Ockenfels

Bert V. Royal, creator of Freeform’s Cruel Summer, has exited the YA drama.

The Disney-owned youth-skewing network has confirmed that Royal is no longer involved in the Jessica Biel-exec produced show. It’s understood that he left after the pilot with reports suggesting that it came after disagreements with a network exec.

News of Royal’s exit comes less than a month after Freeform handed Cruel Summer a Season 2 renewal.

Created by Royal, Cruel Summer is a psychological thriller that follows two young women: Kate Wallis (Olivia Holt), the popular girl with a charmed life who one day goes missing, and Jeanette Turner (Chiara Aurelia), the nerdy wannabe who is accused of being connected to Kate’s disappearance. All signs point to Jeanette’s guilt, but is Kate really who she seems to be? Set over three summers and told through shifting points of view, the series challenges perception and follows how one girl can go from being a sweet outlier to the most despised person in America.

The series stars Olivia Holt, Chiara Aurelia, Michael Landes, Froy Gutierrez, Harley Quinn Smith, Allius Barnes, Blake Lee and Brooklyn Sudano.

It comes from studio eOne. Tia Napolitano serves as showrunner. Executive producers include Napolitano, and Iron Ocean Productions’ Jessica Biel and Michelle Purple. Max Winkler directed the pilot.

This article was printed from https://deadline.com/2021/07/cruel-summer-creator-depart-bert-v-royal-freeform-drama-season-2-1234787067/