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Feature: Primetime

The Riches

Eddie Izzard and Minnie Driver

Eddie Izzard and Minnie Drive take America by the storm as a family of imposters who’ve stolen the identity of the privileged few

Doug and Cherien Riches, and their three children, are not who they purport to be – a wealthy family moving into an upscale gated community. They are, in fact, Wayne and Dahlia Molloy, con artists known as travelers. But they soon discover that living the American Dream with their newfound identities is more challenging than any of their previous stings.

“I wanted to write a show about a family who pretends to be people they’re not,” says Executive Producer of The Riches Dmitry Lipkin. “I came from Russia when I was 10, and ended up growing up in Louisiana, so I wanted to capture that oddness and outside perspective into America. I stumbled upon the travelers – these people exist. They’re tinkers in Ireland, and there are about 30,000 travelers in the United States.”

Surprisingly Lipkin found doing research for the series more difficult than he had imagined. “We tried to talk to travelers, but they’re insular. From everything that we could gather, there is a big con/criminal element to the travelers. We did as much reading as we could, and we have a policeman in the South who is very helpful because he’s dealt a lot with the travelers.”

Eddie Izzard, who portrays Wayne Malloy adds, “But we got a lot of information out of the travelers in Ireland, because they fight on the Internet. But the series essentially is about a family that is of the travelers, it’s not a story about travelers.”

For Oscar-nominated actress Minnie Driver, who plays Dahlia Malloy, this was a series she just couldn’t turn down. “I don’t say yes to projects very often, but when I read this it was the best part I’ve ever been offered. Dahlia is someone who can become anything, can go anywhere, and this was like a springboard into something completely unknown and spontaneous. I’m so incredibly thrilled to be doing it because it’s surprising. I think it will be surprising for audiences because I’m a full-grown ‘swampy’ from Louisiana, and a crack addict.”

by Judy Sloane

Read the full feature in
TV Zone #215

Photo © FX Networks
Feature © Visual Imagination 2007. Not for reproduction

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TV Zone #215
June 2007
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