Annaleigh Ashford goes Broadway in new ‘B Positive’ opener


Michael Starr

“B Positive” co-star Annaleigh Ashford revisits her Broadway roots within the CBS sitcom’s new opening credit — paying homage to a splashy musical stage quantity.

The three-minute montage, shot over 4 days on the Warner Bros. lot in Burbank, options Ashford in character as Gina on “B Positive” — who, within the Season 2 premiere, inherited $48 million from an appreciative resident and acquired the assisted dwelling facility by which she works.

The new opening credit mirror the present’s shift in tone from final season’s arc, by which occasion lady Gina supplied to donate a kidney to straight-laced single dad Drew (Thomas Middleditch) — a highschool acquaintance — whereas he underwent dialysis and hoped she saved herself wholesome for the transplant (which was successful). This season, Drew professed his love for Gina. (Middleditch, carrying a tux, additionally seems within the new opening sequence.)

“[Series creator] Chuck Lorre called me and told me the idea of how he wanted the show to transition,” Ashford, 36, instructed The Post. “He said, ‘I think it’s really important that we change the opening credits to reflect what’s going to be happening in the story. I think we should celebrate the assisted living facility and celebrate the magic of a musical number and let’s use some of your talents in this area.’”

Annaleigh Ashford in the pool sequence for the new opening of "B Positive." She's wearing a bathing suit and a bathing cap and is surrounded by synchronized swimmers.Annaleigh Ashford within the pool sequence (with the Aquadettes) within the new opening for “B Positive.”Michael Yersh

Ashford’s spectacular Broadway resume contains “Legally Blonde,” “Kinky Boots,” “Sunday in the Park with George” (reverse Jake Gyllenhaal) and her Tony-winning efficiency in “You Can’t Take it With You.”

The new opening, choreographed by Spencer Liff, is about at Gina’s assisted dwelling facility, she croons the present’s theme music whereas interacting with the “residents” in a number of completely different eventualities — together with an Esther Williams-type swimming pool quantity.

Annaleigh Ashford sits at a piano while filming the opening for the new "B Positive" credits.Annaleigh Ashford filming the opening montage for the brand new “B Positive” credit.Michael Yarish/2021 Warner Bros.

“The physical therapy sequence has people doing stretches and someone on a gurney doing really fabulous body work,” Ashford mentioned. “We have folks tap-dancing with walkers, with IV poles and utilizing steadiness balls, and we’ve a Bingo sequence doing enjoyable choreography with Bingo stamps and Bingo playing cards.

“We did the synchronized swimming segment with incredible performers called the Aquadettes,” she mentioned. “They’re a swimming crew over the age of 65 and we did a complete part with them. I’m so dangerous at swimming — I can swim, if I obtained caught in the midst of water I may float on my again for 4 hours — however these girls have been treading water for an hour, and one among them was 95. I couldn’t even try this for 2 minutes. They have been serving to me.

“It felt really good to put on some sequins. I’m not going to lie to you,” she mentioned. “I was really sore on the third day. I was getting my hair and makeup done and I had to ice my shins. I was like, ‘What is going on with my body?’ All of the dancers [on the segment], their backgrounds are on Broadway and many of them have been dancing out here in LA for years. They were like, ‘Girl, the floor [on the soundstage] is concrete, you put ice on your shins at night.’ I learned something new.”

Annaleigh Ashford and Thomas Middleditch in a scene from Season 2 of "B Positive." Ashford is leaning on the edge of a counter and is wearing a dress and high heels; Middleditch is wearing jeans and a jacket.Annaleigh Ashford and co-star Thomas Middleditch in a scene from Season 2 of “B Positive” on CBS.CBS

The new opening credit can fluctuate episode-to-episode. “It gives the editors and producers a lot of variety about what they can use,” Ashford mentioned. “There are many various variations of what we filmed.

“It’s so related, as a result of Betty White simply handed and so many individuals are watching ‘The Golden Girls,’” she said. “There were multiple opening-credit versions for that series and every once in a while we get the ‘long’ model. There’s one thing thrilling and enjoyable about that.

“The people in my life who watch [‘B Positive’] will text me when the credits are a little longer or a little different. It’s an extension of the storytelling we’re doing within the 22 minutes we have with the audience.”

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