Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Jamie Lynn Spears reprises Nickelodeon role, ‘Zoey 102’ rolling in Wilmington

“Zoey 102” has the greenlight from Paramount+ and Nickelodeon. (Courtesy Paramount+)

WILMINGTON — The first production of the year is up and running in Wilmington and all signs point to Jamie Lynn Spears being the star.

The City of Wilmington released film permits earlier this week for “Electric Love” — setting up at Perry’s Emporium on Independence Boulevard and Common Desk coworking space in downtown Wilmington. According to a post from Kimmie Stewart Casting, roles were being filled at the last minute for a shoot at UNCW on Friday, Jan. 13 as well.

Nickelodeon revealed in a press release Thursday it was filming in North Carolina. The state’s film office has listed two “TBA” made-for-TV/streaming movies currently, in the western area and Wilmington region. A Hallmark movie is filming at the Biltmore, according to reports, and in Wilmington, “Electric Love.” (Films often have pseudonyms while in production.)

“I’m beyond thrilled to be back alongside my PCA family and continue the story of Zoey and all the characters fans know and love,” Spears said in the press release.

Spears is reprising her role in the Paramount+ and Nickelodeon production of “Zoey 102.” Directed by Nancy Hower (“Saturdays,” “So Help Me Todd,” “QuickDraw”), the film is written by Monica Sherer and Madeline Whitby (“Betch,” “Drama Club,” “All That”). 

“Zoey 102” is in production in Wilmington. (Courtesy Paramount+)

The sister of pop-icon Britney will be joined by original cast members, such as Erin Sanders (Quinn Pensky), Sean Flynn (Chase Matthews), Matthew Underwood (Logan Reese), Christopher Massey (Michael Barret), Abby Wilde (Stacey Dillsen) and Jack Salvatore (Mark Del Figgalo). 

Absent is Austin Butler, who won a Golden Globe earlier this week for his titular role in Baz Luhrmann’s film “Elvis.” 

Also not listed to return is Alexa Nikolas, Paul Butcher, Kristin Herrera, Victoria Justice, and Jennette McCurdy. McCurdy starred in the original iteration of Nickelodeon’s “iCarly”; the YA show was reprised without her on Paramount+ in 2021. 

Last year, McCurdy claimed in her memoir, “I’m Glad My Mom Died,” Nickelodeon attempted to ply her with hush money, to the tune of $300,000 in exchange for silence against “the creator.” Dan Schneider was behind both “Zoey 101” and “iCarly. As a top producer at Nickelodeon, he was let go in 2018. McCurdy wrote in her memoir he gave the young actor alcohol and conducted himself inappropriately, in some instances offering massages.

“Zoey 101” aired on Nickelodeon from 2005 to 2008 and received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Children’s Programming during the first season. The story followed Zoey and her friends enrolled at a former all-boys school, Pacific Coast Academy.

Spears is also an executive producer of the followup film and has told multiple media outlets over the years that another iteration of Zoey wasn’t off the table. The follow-up has the alums reuniting in present day for a wedding.

The film will be shooting through Feb. 17, according to Kimmie Stewart Casting. The agency has done a call for numerous background actors, including “crew for a reality dating show,” audience members for a TedTalk in London, as well as fans who are “young, hip, trendy LA kids in the summertime.”

Jamie Lynn Spears posted to Instagram Thursday its official return. “Zoey 102” is slated to premiere on Paramount+ later this year.

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Shea Carver
Shea Carver
Shea Carver is the editor in chief at Port City Daily. A UNCW alumna, Shea worked in the print media business in Wilmington for 22 years before joining the PCD team in October 2020. She specializes in arts coverage — music, film, literature, theatre — the dining scene, and can often be tapped on where to go, what to do and who to see in Wilmington. When she isn’t hanging with her pup, Shadow Wolf, tending the garden or spinning vinyl, she’s attending concerts and live theater.

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