Character: Celia Brady
Created by: Billy Ray
Based on: The Last Tycoon by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Produced by: Christopher Keyser, Joshua D. Maurer, Billy Ray
Other cast: Matt Bomer, Kelsey Grammer
Premiere date: June 17, 2016 (Pilot); July 28, 2017 (Full Series)
Seasons: 1 (2016-2017)
Running time: 61 minutes
Original network: Amazon Video
The Last Tycoon is an American television series, originating from a pilot produced in 2016 as part of Amazon Studios’ seventh pilot season. The show stars Matt Bomer and Kelsey Grammer and is loosely based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s last book The Last Tycoon. Amazon picked up the pilot to series on July 27, 2016. The first season premiered on July 28, 2017, but the series was cancelled on September 9, 2017.
Full name: Cecelia Brady
Age: 19 (Season 1 ; Birth date unknown)
Occupation: College student, works at Brady-American studios
Relatives: Pat Brady (father), Rose Brady (mother)
Celia Brady, Pat Brady’s daughter, a lost young rich girl in love with Monroe who begins taking her seriously after her intriguing movie pitch.
- It was in development for HBO until Amazon picked it up in 2014.
- This will be the first screen adaptation of the book since The Last Tycoon (1976).
- The titular character, as in the novel, was inspired by MGM’s Irving Thalberg.
- This will be Billy Ray’s first TV series since Earth 2 (1994).
Quotes (on the show)
- (Lily Collins on doing research for the show) “I had read [The Last Tycoon] before, ages ago, so I reread it. I saw the movie version with Robert De Niro. I really just kept reading about the period as much as I could. I love watching old movies anyway–I grew up with my mom watching old movies and being immersed in the history of old Hollywood. So, for me, it felt like home. [My character Celia’s] mentality, her sass, spunk, and intellect is something that I could draw from many women in my life but also many real people that I had read about over the years.”
- (Billy Ray on which actor is more like their characters and in which way) “Tough question. They’ve all become their characters because they’re all such great actors. Off camera, none of them are very much like the people they play. The closest might actually be Mark O’Brien, who plays Max Miner. Mark shares Max’s genuine humility. And Lily certainly shares Celia’s drive, ethics, and innate intelligence.”
- (Lily Collins on Celia’s desire for Matt Bomer’s character – Monroe) “For Celia, her love of Monroe far surpasses the girl-loves-boy theme. I think she respects him so much in terms of his vision and his demeanor and what he stands for and his heart, she is just not shy. She’s rough around this guy and she loved him all her life, but now she’s finding her womanhood, and she’s not afraid to use it—and that may be to her detriment at some point, but I think as viewers it allows us to see this funky, sassy girl, who is vulnerable at times. She’s really a sign of what’s to come in terms of women and their drive and what will soon be a very strong period of important, vocal women working as well as voicing their opinions among the men.”
- (Billy Ray on if he expected the chemistry between Lily Collins and Matt Bomer to be so great) “One always hopes. But I knew the first time they met for a script meeting that they would be gold together. Lily doesn’t mind gushing about Matt, and Matt always felt so tickled by her. It was perfect.”
- (Matt Bomer on if Monroe and Celia have a change at working out as a couple) “I would say so. There are obviously some pretty twisted relationships and dynamics in Monroe’s life as it is, and you could start with the fact that he’s having an illicit affair with Celia’s mother. But yeah, I think it would have to be down the road [for Monroe to have a relationship with Celia], but absolutely. I love how much their relationship grows within the course of the pilot. He wants to shield her from this dark business, but by the end of [the pilot], he’s almost welcoming her to the big boys club.”
- (Lily Collins on working with costume designer Janie Bryant) “Oh my god, she’s so fantastic. I love her accent, I love her demeanor, I love her aesthetic and her eye. She’s like a ball of fire—she’s so sweet. She’s very much like Celia. She’s got this Southern charm and femininity yet she’s so tenacious and she speaks her mind and she knows what she wants—she’s brave and she’s a hard worker, and I just really respect her so much. Every detail, like the nuances of the outfits and every centimeter or millimeter counts when you’re dealing with her clothes you know, and she really sources the most amazing vintage clothing—the colors I would have thought wouldn’t have worked on me, she just foresaw making me pop and I trust her implicitly. I think she’s a wonderful person.”
- (Lily Collins on her favorite memory from shooting) “I remember I was doing that pitch with Monroe, we did it a couple of times and I was getting really, really into it and [the director] Billy [Ray] yelled “cut!” and he came over and said, “Brilliant, I loved it, but did you hear yourself go a little ‘Cookie’ in there?” He was referencing Empire and apparently as I was pitching, I just went full on Cookie. He said, “You got so into it, but you got so modern that you were giving me such sass—you took me out of the ’30s…but it was brilliant!” It was just so funny, me standing there, in the Biltmore Hotel dressed in the 1930s going full-on Cookie.”
- (Lily Collins on her favorite things about dressing like Celia in the 30’s) “I really loved the hats! Celia is a young woman who, you know, she’s still got that fresh young vibe about her but at the same time she’s quite wise beyond her years and very mature and she has that womanly, sexy quality, but at the same time she’s very youthful in her clothes. She has that interesting mix between the two. I really love that balance about fashion.”
Check out our episode guide, with information on every episode from The Last Tycoon.
An Inside Look