Clayton Chitty✔ takes on the task of playing Fresno’s Kevin Federline in the upcoming Lifetime movie, “Britney Ever After.” The two-hour biopic looks at Spears’ rise to fame, fall from grace and her return.
Spears is portrayed by Natasha Bassett, an Australian who appeared in “Camp,” “Rake” and “Hail, Caesar!”
Chitty is a Canadian actor who has made a handful of guest appearances including roles on “The Man in the High Castle,” “Arrow” and “Electric Woman and Dyna Girl.” He was only slightly familiar with Federline before getting the role.
“I knew of Kevin and Britney’s relationship and life a bit, mostly from what I had heard or seen on TV or the internet. I knew Kevin was a dancer and a rapper. To know Kevin beyond that didn’t come until researching the role,” Chitty says. “The Kevin I was playing is a guy wrapped up in a crazy famous love tornado. A guy trying to define himself and find his one voice while being in love with and dating one of the biggest pop stars in the world.”
The research meant Chitty had to channel his younger self when it came to how he dressed and the music. Watching the reality series, “Britney & Kevin: Chaotic,” was a big help.
He describes the cable movie as a combination tale of fame and a love story. It shows the passion Spears had for the men in her life and the music.
“Their lives were a fantasy and an escape for most people. People were already obsessed with Britney’s life and then along comes Kevin who is this ‘bad boy’ dancer. It was exciting to watch them together,” Chitty says. “Here is this backup dancer, trying to make it in his career. He meets and falls in love with Britney and they decide to record everything they did, propelling Kevin into fame by association.
“It also exposed who they really were as people.”
The actor says Canada doesn’t have anyone that compares to Federline but he’s trying to get the name “Clay Fed” to stick.
‘The Good Fight’ debuts
Fans of “The Good Wife” have been crying into their legal briefs since the CBS series went off the air. Julianna Margulies hasn’t changed her mind and decided to go back to work but there is a way to soften the blow of the series ending: the spinoff series, “The Good Fight.”
The big difference – along with Margulies not being on the show – is that the new series will be available only through the streaming service of CBS All Access. The first episode will be broadcast on CBS (KGPE, Channel 47.1) at 8 p..m. Sunday, Feb. 19, but the other episodes will only be at the online location starting the same night. New episodes will be available online weekly on Sundays.
The series picks up one year after the events of the final episode of “The Good Wife.” An enormous financial scam has destroyed the reputation of a young lawyer, Maia Rindell (Rose Leslie), while wiping out her mentor and godmother Diane Lockhart’s (Christine Baranski✔) savings.
After playing Lockhart on “The Good Wife,” Baranski had plenty of ideas about how to play the same character but in a different setting.
“We certainly talked about the year in between. We did speak about how she processed all that had happened to her, particularly in those final episodes, and where her life was as the new show began in terms of her marriage, in terms of her position at the firm,” Baranski says. “She’s estranged from her husband for reasons of his infidelity. But she’s at the top of her game when this show starts.”
That changes quickly and the direction her character takes is the central theme of the show.
How that direction is taken will be different from the network show because online programming doesn’t have to go by the same rules. The language on “The Good Fight” will be more colorful while relationships will be played out in a more revealing manner.
Baranski says she is happy to return to the role she played on “The Good Wife” but she was also at enough peace with her work on the network show that she would have been able to move on to other projects. It was all a matter of what CBS decided.
Britney Ever After
- 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 18, Lifetime
The Good Fight
- 8 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 19, KGPE (Channel 47.1); streaming on CBS All Access thereafter