Big Little Lies: 7 Things To Know

Hilary Bronwyn Gayle/HBO

Big Little Lies is one of the most buzzed new shows coming to our small screens this winter. The HBO comedy-drama miniseries will consist of seven episodes directed by Jean-Marc Vallee and is set to premiere in just a few weeks on February 19. The production team and cast have kept a tight lid on what we can expect in this intriguing new show which makes it even more enticing to viewers! We were finally gifted with a brief trailer, but instead of giving us a good idea of what to expect, it just raised more questions! Don’t fret — we did a little digging and found a few fun facts. For those who just can’t wait until the premiere, here are 7 things to know about Big Little Lies!

7. Star-Studded Cast

One of the most intriguing things about HBO’s new show, Big Little Lies, is it’s incredible cast! This show is full of A-list stars like Reese Witherspoon, who plays the character of Madeline, Nicole Kidman as Celeste, and Shailene Woodley as the new mom in town, Jane. This will be the biggest television role for both Witherspoon and Kidman to date. Viewers will also see big names like Zoe Kravitz, Alexander Skarsgard from True Blood, Laura Dern from Jurassic Park, James Tupper from Revenge, and Adam Scott of Step Brothers. Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman also play a part behind the screen as executive producers on the project.

6. Based on a Book

Big Little Lies is based on the best-selling novel with the same title written by Laine Moriarty. This is the Australian novelist’s sixth book — she has also penned hugely successful stories like The Husband’s Secret, The Hypnotist’s Love Story, Three Wishes and What Alice Forgot. People who are familiar with the novel can expect the show to be fairly similar, but there will definitely be some obvious differences. The script for the miniseries wasn’t written by Laine Moriarty — it was handed off to David E. Kelley, the writer of Boston Legal and Ally McBeal. “They’ve stuck fairly closely, but because it’s a series they’ve had to go off in different directions and they’ve added some plot,” said Moriarty. “So people will recognize lots of scenes but there’s also scenes that are not in my book at all and completely new subplots and completely new characters.”


5. What’s it About?

According to reports online, the show is about three moms, Woodley, Kidman and Witherspoon, and their worlds are turned upside down when their children start hanging out and sharing secrets. It’s been described as the “mom version of Pretty Little Liars” with a whodunit kind of storyline. Because the show is based on the book, we can draw a pretty good conclusion about what happens. In the novel there are three main characters: Madeline, Celeste and Jane. Madeline is recently divorced, and her child ends up in the same kindergarten class as her ex-husband and his new wife’s daughter. Then there’s Celeste who is an extremely driven, beautiful mother of two twin boys, who is dealing with some family issues while trying to be the head of the school’s parent body. Finally, Jane is the new mom in town who becomes friends with Madeline and Celeste. Jane has “secret doubts about her son” and brings trouble with her when she comes to town.

Hilary Bronwyn Gayle/HBO

4. Change of Location

It’s always a tricky task to take a great novel and turn it into a motion picture. One big thing that upset a lot of readers about the transition from book to small-screen was the change in location. In the novel, the story takes place in Australia, but on the show it’s been moved to California. Luckily, Moriarty doesn’t share the same bitterness and isn’t at all bothered about the change in location. “It would have been nice if it had been set in Austrlia, but…it’s still just as exciting. I think perhaps if it had been set in Australia, I would have wanted to hold on too closely. I would have wanted everything to be exactly the same. So, in a way, it helped with my letting go process,” she said.


3. Nicole Kidman Made Liane Moriarty Cry

In an interview with TheFIX, Moriarty revealed that she was brought to tears during one particular scene while on the set of Big Little Lies. “I was lucky because I happened to be there on the night they were filming the trivia night, which is a big scene in the book. So all the women were dressed as Audrey Hepburn and all the men as Elvis Presley. It was the best night to be there,” she said. “I did feel surprisingly emotional to see Nicole Kidman dressed as my character Celeste. They had her dressed exactly as I described her in the books, so I was surprised that I got a bit teary when I saw her. She looked like something from a fairy tale.”


2. Bidding War

Big Little Lies is a hot commodity! HBO engaged in a bidding war with Netflix to gain rights to produce the show, and of course, HBO won. It seems like television is going in a new direction, from silly sitcoms to dramatic and feature-film like miniseries, which is exactly what this new show is. There’s been a lot of success with this kind of production, just look at shows like American Horror Story, True Detective and Fargo. That being said, the network gave Big Little Lies the highly coveted time slot of Sunday evenings which was previously filled by shows like Game of Thrones and Westworld. This tells us that HBO expects big things for Big Little Lies!


1. Murder Mystery

In an interview with The Huffington Post, Reese Withspoon revealed the show revolves around a murder mystery and the season finale is when the big secret is revealed: “One of the grown-ups kills another grown-up, but you don’t know who. You know in the very beginning that one of us kills another one of us, but you don’t find out until the very end. I just saw the end this week. It’s so good. It’s really…scary. And real. It’s about these women, moms, who are viciously protective of their children, but also have a lot of secrets in their lives,” she said. In the season finale, all of the characters attend a trivia night, which is when the killer is revealed.

Katherine G

Katherine G

Katherine is the Managing Editor for Health and Parenting, but she has a soft spot for entertainment. She loves binging shows on Netflix, reality TV is a guilty pleasure, and country music is her go-to playlist. When she's not writing, she's spending time outdoors, especially with her puppy Zoey!