‘Coach Charming’ gets new show

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 2, 2017

The CW announced this week it will pilot Insatiable, a drama that was inspired by a Southern lawyer and beauty pageant coach.

Yes, that Southern lawyer and beauty pageant coach; the same one whose reality series, Coach Charming, was filmed in Andalusia.

“It all started back in 2014 when I was interviewed by the New York Times,” local attorney Bill Alverson said Wednesday.

What started as an interview about his pageant work with successive winners of the Miss America pageant ended up as a feature in the New York Times’ Sunday magazine. A video version of the story launched on the NYT website.

In almost no time, he had been contacted about reality TV, and about developing scripted shows.

“I’ll never forget, I was standing in a parking lot in Atlanta, and the phone rang. It was Julie McNamara.”

McNamara works with CBS. A production company had connected him with the successful producer, who wanted to talk about developing a show built around his life. Later that year, after Alverson had acquired an agent, CBS bought the rights to develop the show. Doing Coach Charming didn’t conflict with the contract, which was later renewed and eventually purchased by The CW, which is part of the CBS family.

Alverson has been working with Lauren Gussis of Ryan Segrest Productions, whose work would be best known to local audiences as the executive producer of Dexter.

“I am a producer, which means I am actually participating in the development of the show,” Alverson said. “My involvement has been to work with Lauren, and we have been working on this project for a year and a half.”

Early on, he flew to Beverly Hills and spent some time with Gussis. Since then, they have talked through ideas and events.

“I am not a writer,” he said. “And I did not do any editing. But we have been honing it, honing it, honing it, all the way through until yesterday.”

By “yesterday,” he means Tuesday, when The CW announced four new shows in pilot for the network, including Insatiable.

“It’s just a pilot,” Alverson said. “I don’t know who is playing me.”

By the end of February, he said, Ryan Seacrest Productions should have a director and actors in place, then will film a pilot, he said.

“They could just air the pilot and get a response,” he said. “They could test market the pilot.”

Insatiable is based in a small, Southern town, that is yet to be identified.

“The character is a lawyer, and the personality traits are very much similar to mine,” Alverson said. “It is loosely based on myself. In it, I have a family, but the family members are not depicted to be my family members. There has been no consulting or interviewing (with them). There are no characters in the show based on anybody in my daily life.”

Deadline Hollywood reported Tuesday, “The drama focuses on a disgraced, dissatisfied civil lawyer-turned-beauty pageant coach who takes on a vengeful, bullied teenager as his client, and has no idea what he’s about to unleash upon the world.”

The whole process has been fun, Alverson said.

For instance, since the New York Times piece, he has done the reality show, and three appearances on Nightline.

“Then I turn around and go eat at Big Mike’s and hang out in Andalusia,” he said. “Literally, one day I’m in Beverly Hills; the next day, I’m at the Corner Market.

“It’s one of those things where we think we know our future and plan for it,” he said. “I didn’t seek any of this. It came in and I feel very grateful. If it doesn’t go beyond this, it’s like going to Walt Disney World. It’s a fun day.”