A Shari Lewis and Lamb Chop documentary is coming from White Horse Pictures and MoJo Global Arts. Emmy nominee Lisa D’Apolito (“Love, Gilda“) is directing. If you grew up loving “Lamb Chop’s Play-Along,” then this movie will be of special interest to you. Personally, I grew up watching the Canadian-American TV show and singing along to the “Song That Never Ends.” So this will be a real treat to watch her story and how she created the character that millions of kids connected to.
D’Apolito said of the project:
“As a young woman Shari Lewis was a pioneer in television, and in her later years she was still singing and kicking up her heels with Lamb Chop – educating a whole new generation of children. Shari’s story is one of resilience and perseverance. I feel very fortunate to be working with this amazing team and to enter into the magical world of Shari and Lamb Chop, which takes you to a place that can open your heart and make you smile.”
“Shari & Lamb Chop” is being produced by White Horse’s Cassidy Hartmann (The Apollo) and Nicholas Ferrall (The Beatles: Eight Days A Week), MoJo’s Douglas Warner (Paul Rodriguez: The Here & Wow) and D’Apolito. White Horse’s Nigel Sinclair (The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend A Broken Heart) and Jeanne Elfant Festa (Pavarotti) will executive produce with MoJo’s Morris Ruskin. The documentary is being produced with the full cooperation of the Shari Lewis estate, through her daughter Mallory Lewis. Mallory, who has performed with Lamb Chop for the last twenty years, is consulting on the film.
Concord Originals is financing the film along with Olive Hill Media, The 51 Fund and Carlene Laughlin. Serving as executive producers are Concord Originals’ Sophia Dilley, Charles Hopkins and Wesley Adams; Olive Hill’s Tim Lee and Michael Cho; The 51 Fund’s Caitlin Gold, Naomi McDougall Jones, and Lindsay Lanzillotta as well as Carlene Laughlin. Cassidy Hartmann will also serve as writer.
Lewis was a young female ventriloquist that made it big time with her character Lamb Chop. While searching for her voice, she wanted to be able to say things that were unheard of to hear from a woman in the 1950s. Her solution was to create a sock puppet named Lamb Chop that would challenge social norms and teach children how to be good people. Her puppets Lamb Chop, Charley Horse, and Hush Puppy taught us simple humor, conflict resolution, and a host of essential social and cognitive building blocks.
The team debuted on “Captain Kangaroo” in 1956, and eventually signed on to their own show, “Lamb Chop’s Play-Along,” which aired between 1992 and 1995. PBS housed reruns until 1997, just one year before Shari passed away in 1998. Qubo would go on to feature the series until 2007.
This documentary will share Lewis’ story, which included winning 13 Emmys and a Peabody. She authored 60 children’s books. and made a huge impact on kids growing up from the 50s to the early 00s. Early loglines indicate this project will delve into the “unique psychology that exists between performer and puppet, and the world of ventriloquism and magic.”
We’ll let you know what we hear about a possible release date.