Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Tori Spelling Vacates The CW's '90210'

Tori Spelling is conspicuously absent from the original cast of Beverly Hills 90210

Who will run "the coolest store in Beverly Hills" now that Donna Martin has left town?

The CW's behind-the-scenes hand wringing to wangle Tori Spelling a recurring role on the upcoming Beverly Hills 90210 spin-off was a waste. The move didn't pay off for Spelling or network head Dawn Ostroff.

Spelling pulled out over a salary dispute. Bottom line: she would earn less than half per episode as co-stars Jennie Garth and Shannen Doherty. How could anyone possible expect the star of her own Oxygen reality series to play a bit part under such horrid conditions?

Now the pressure may be mounting on Ostrow to put up or get packing. Some bloggers believe 90210 is her last chance to hit a ratings homer, opening the door for future begging, pleading and feting to pacify Spelling's ego and sweet talk her back into a guest appearance.

From this blogger's vantage point, Donna Martin running some Rodeo Drive boutique will not make or break the sequel. As for Ostrow, isn't all this hypothetical back-stabbing a tad premature?

I was a huge fan of the original 90210 series, going so far as to stow every character doll on the shelf for future prosperity. A ratings opening of "4" seems like an impossibly high standard of success, especially in light of competitors such as The Hills, One Tree Hill, Gossip Girls, and reality programming. How many teen angst soap operas can women 18-to-34 realistically be expected to endure?

Without the creative forces of Darren Star and Aaron Spelling, I hold out little hope of the spin-off capturing lightening in a bottle twice. On the other hand, the possibility of once again catching Garth and Doherty at each other's throats may well be worth weathering any initial storm.