Kelley, who has produced such other shows asL.A. Law andAlly McBeal, has won ten Emmys. With his new HBO vehicle,Big Little Lies, Kelley adapted the best selling novel of the same name from author Liane Moriarty. The show, which is executive produced by Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon, stars both and a powerful female cast that includes Laura Dern, Shailene Woodley, and Zoe Kravitz. The show is set in Monterey, California, which separates it from the book, which is set in Australia.
"We wanted to bring the project over to America, in an American city, and I wanted to find one with the values that were in the book. A mix of demographics, affluent people and people less so," said Kelley. "Competitive parents, both in their professional lives and in their roles as primary caregivers. I've lived up in Northern California for the last 13 years and have spent quite a bit of time in Monterey, and I thought that was a good translation. Monterey is obviously physically beautiful, the rugged coastline, and it had the right demographic mix, with its proximity to Silicon Valley. We populate it with that lean-in sort of mentality. So it fit the bill for a number of different reasons."
Kelley also said that the homes in Monterey played a part in choosing the location.
"It's a beautiful place," said Kelley. "That was one of the challenges we had, not making it too beautiful. Because Madeline is upper-middle class and yet, that home, looking out on that ocean, it's pretty spectacular."