“If you were going to write these fairy tales today, what might they look like?” That’s how Tell Me a Story showrunner Kevin Williamson explains the idea behind the new CBS All Access series, which takes three fairy tales — The Three Little Pigs, Little Red Riding Hood, and Hansel and Gretel — and sets them in the modern day.
More specifically, it sets them in New York City, which acts as the show’s version of the woods. So instead of Little Red Riding Hood meeting a wolf in the woods behind Grandmother’s house, she might meet multiple wolves — in the form of men — on the sidewalk behind Grandmother’s townhouse. “The original story was about temptation. If she strays from the path, there are wolves out there,” Williamson says. “When we start our story, we begin with a young girl who has already strayed from the path. After the loss of her mom, she comes to live with her grandmother in New York City, and she tries to start all over again.” Little Red Riding Hood is played by The Originals‘ Danielle Campbell, with Sex and the City‘s Kim Cattrall playing, as Williamson puts it, “not quite your typical grandmother.”
But a new take on the grandmother isn’t the only change viewers can expect. “We follow the stories to their ending, but we may not end them the way that you know,” Williamson says. “We twist it around.” And over the course of the first season’s 10 episodes, Campbell and Cattrall’s plot line will intertwine with stories featuring stars like The Vampire Diaries‘ Paul Wesley, Zoo‘s James Wolk, Once Upon a Time‘s Dania Ramirez, and Greek‘s Spencer Grammer, until each tale finds its ending … happy or not.
EW has an exclusive look at the show’s opening credits above.
Tell Me A Story premieres on CBS All Access on Halloween.