ATLANTA, May 2, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Kicking off GMC TV's name change to UP in June, the network continues as America's leading destination for "Uplifting Entertainment" with the premiere of its original World Premiere Series "Family Addition with Leigh Anne Tuohy," the network's first non-scripted series. Produced by Tremendous! Entertainment, "Family Addition with Leigh Anne Tuohy" is a fun, inspirational and big-hearted series starring Leigh Anne Tuohy, the spirited real-life inspiration behind the blockbuster film The Blind Side, which earned Sandra Bullock an Academy Award® for Best Actress. The series makes its world television premiere on UP on Friday, June 7 at 9 p.m. EDT.
Each episode follows a different family as they go through the practical, physical and emotional process of adding a new family member and also facilitates a makeover of part of their homes to accommodate the new family additions. Tuohy provides the series' creative vision and oversees the weekly home improvement projects with her team.
"There are so many unsung heroes in communities across America who demonstrate unconditional love and support by taking on the responsibility of fostering and then adopting children in their care," says Tuohy. "These life-changing, emotional situations can be overwhelming. In 'Family Addition,' we help to break down walls to help families deal with the changes they experience and to help ensure that ultimately each child has an opportunity to have a forever family and a place where they feel loved, valued and accepted."
"Family Addition" also features other famous members of "Team Tuohy," including Tuohy's vivacious daughter, Collins Tuohy (played by Lily Collins in The Blind Side), a noted inspirational speaker and co-owner of Whimsy Cookie, a boutique cookie company; and witty Special Educator "Miss Sue" Mitchell (played by Kathy Bates in The Blind Side), whose career spans more than four decades in education, with experience from elementary to the collegiate level. The women provide support to the families in unique ways. And, as is Leigh Anne's get-it-done-style, don't be surprised who else may show up as needed to help get the project completed.
"We are pleased to partner with the indomitable Leigh Anne Tuohy, a proven champion for those in need, and Tremendous! Entertainment, one of the leading production companies in the industry," said Brad Siegel, vice chairman of GMC. "This show is a clear demonstration of GMC's unique brand of uplifting entertainment translated into the reality genre. It showcases families who are blending together to make a new family unit. The road is not always smooth. Each family faces challenges – whether they are emotional or physical – that have to be met and Leigh Anne brings her 'no holds barred,' yet compassionate approach to each unique family addition to help them through the transition. We get to share in the journey as these families open their homes and their hearts to children in need. Their commitment is an inspiration to us all."
Each week, Team Tuohy will present an extraordinary, new family into homes across America. These courageous families include three from Memphis and three from Los Angeles. Here's a brief look at each "Family Addition" family:
Shirdawn and Jeffrey Jackson, a loving couple with one biological child and one older adopted daughter, opened their hearts and home to seven young siblings in foster care, who previously lived in a very unstable environment in a motel. In a house filled to the brim and every bedroom packed with multiple kids, the Jacksons find that the only spaces available for the children to play are in the tiny living room and an overgrown, disorganized backyard. Team Tuohy Mission: Help the family simplify their lives and provide tools that enable them to enjoy merging into a wonderful family unit.
Tamika Dobbins is a kidney transplant survivor and single mother raising a young boy she fostered since infancy and later adopted. Now divorced, Tamika finds herself desperate for help with Aidan. Team Tuohy Mission: Help Tamika obtain the support she needs, while addressing the issue of foster children being returned to the unstable situations from which they were originally removed.
Jill and Graham Sanders have faced many challenges in their eight years of marriage, but have always managed to make it through. But things get a little rocky when they take in Jill's nephew, Johnny, who was neglected in early childhood. Team Tuohy Mission: Help unite this fractured family and give them the space to create memories that will last a lifetime.
Tiffany Soto was a carefree single woman in her 20s until her sister was on the verge of losing custody of her three year-old son, Elijah. Thinking it would be a temporary fix, Tiffany became an overnight mom as Elijah's foster parent. Eventually, Tiffany found her footing in this new role. After marrying her high school sweetheart, Bryan, the pair began adoption proceedings for Elijah. Team Tuohy Mission: Help Tiffany and Elijah embrace and celebrate their new family in "Family Addition" style!
After numerous attempts, Lisa and Jeremy Palmer were told they could not have children of their own. Heartbroken, the Palmers looked into other options. Around the same time, an old friend of Lisa's turned to her in a desperate attempt to get help for her son, whom she could no longer properly care for due to her struggles with addiction. John was just the beginning. Since then, the Palmers have fostered William (22), Rudy (19), Devan (14) and Wyatt (10), all of whom remain with the family today. Each boy has his own story of abuse, abandonment and alienation that has led to the need for counseling and support. Team Tuohy Mission: Help these young men get the support they need to continue to build on the positive foundation having a loving family has afforded, and, to give a little slice of heaven to these remarkable parents who have put everything into their family.
While Sherri and David Schooley love being parents to their three biological children, they always wanted to adopt too. When they came across a group of three siblings in foster care, Arlana (7), Savannah (5) and Ian (3), their hearts melted and their home opened. Now, with eight people living in a four-bedroom home, the Schooley's are busting at the seams. Team Tuohy Mission: Help the Schooley family create a more comfortable living environment and move their foster kids closer to adoption.
"Family Addition with Leigh Anne Tuohy" will be the first UP World Premiere Series. GMC TV will officially change its name to UP on June 1. The network's new name communicates a clear sense of its unique brand position, which has always been, and will continue to be "Uplifting Entertainment."
UP Presents "Family Addition with Leigh Anne Tuohy." Produced by Tremendous! Entertainment. Created by Tim Hamilton and Nancy Hadley. Executive Producers: Colleen Needles Steward, Tim Hamilton, Shannon Keenan Demers, Marilyn Wilson, Leigh Anne Tuohy and Don Epstein. Co-Executive Producers: Becca Gullion and Jessica Reynolds. Consulting producer is Lee Kernis.
Follow our cast at:
- Leigh Anne Tuohy @LeighAnneTuohy #FamilyAddition, on Facebook and her website, www.leighannetuohy.com
- Miss Sue Mitchell @TheRealMsSue
- Collins Tuohy @whimsycookieco and her website whimsycookieco.com
ABOUT TREMENDOUS! ENTERTAINMENT
Tremendous! Entertainment is an industry leading television and home video production company that specializes in telling great stories especially ones that break new ground, feature memorable characters and inspire and entertain. With state of the art production facilities in Los Angeles and Minnesota, Tremendous! creates and produces a diversified portfolio of unscripted television including docu-series, travel, natural history, science and lifestyle programming. Tremendous! Entertainment was established in 1995.
ABOUT GMC TV
GMC TV (www.watchGMCtv.com) is America's favorite network for uplifting family entertainment. The network presents original and acquired movies, series, stage plays and music specials along with gMovies, the first faith-friendly streaming movie service. The GMC TV brand is reflected in "Uplift Someone," the network's successful pro-social initiative. GMC TV can be seen in more than 62 million homes on various cable systems around the country, as well as DISH Network on channel 188, DIRECTV on channel 338 and Verizon FiOS on channel 224. Follow GMC TV on Facebook and Twitter at http://facebook.com/gmctv and http://twitter.com/gmctv.
For additional press materials including photos and screener episodes, please visit: www.watchgmctv.com/GMC/FamilyAdditionPressRoom
SOURCE GMC TV