How Ashlee and Mischa Can Get Their Groove Back
By Liana Maeby Posted Nov 1st 2009 01:00PM
Ashlee Simpson-Wentz and Mischa Barton jobless. Simpson-Wentz's contract was not renewed on L.A. soap update 'Melrose Place,' and Barton's 'The Beautiful Life' was canceled before it even got going. PopEater examines what the two starlets can do next.
Simpson-Wentz, along with co-star Colin Egglesfield, will be off Melrose come January. The rocker-turned-actress plays Violet Foster, a small town girl with a dark side who found herself at the center of the series' murder mystery. Producers have claimed it was always their intention to keep Simpson-Wentz's time on the show short. As EP Todd Slavkin told Entertainment Weekly: "That was the original plan going into the development of the show. We felt that once the murder mystery was resolved, the tone of the show was going to shift into a much more fun, romantic, sexy upbeat kind of show, and [her] character would move on."
Meanwhile, Mischa Barton's CW show, 'The Beautiful Life,' was cancelled after only two episodes, making it the first casualty of the fall season. In the series, set in New York's cutthroat fashion universe, Barton played model Sonja Stone, a former It girl whose career had fallen into decline. Despite a glamorous premise, the pilot pulled in only 1.5 million viewers, a number that plummeted even further following the second episode, forcing the ax to fall.
So who's likely to be more affected by the pair of sackings? Ashlee Simpson-Wentz's got a triple platinum album under her belt and a son, Bronx Mowgli, with Fall Out Boy rocker Pete Wentz. With 'Melrose' out of the picture, Simpson-Wentz will have more time to focus on raising her tot, and maybe even to work on a new album.
But for Mischa Barton, the CW show was seen as something of a comeback. The actress, who has taken only a handful of jobs since leaving 'The O.C.' in 2006, has a history of prioritizing hard-partying over her career. In fact, much about Barton's Beautiful Life character seemed ripped from the pages of her own diary. In addition to suffering a fall from grace, Sonja Stone's constant pill popping echoed Barton's own battles with substance abuse – she did a stint in rehab following a DUI in 2007, and suffered a breakdown last July that landed her in the Cedars-Sinai psych ward. Barton has stated a desire to hunker down and focus on landing more serious film roles, and that might be just what the actress needs. A break from the trials and tribulations of living the beautiful life.
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