×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Sci-Fi Drama ‘Sona’ Starring Ashley Clements Premieres on Legendary’s Alpha

Kickstarter-funded series features cameo by Wil Wheaton

Ashley Clements’ “Sona” space-drama series — a labor of love that was shot mostly in her L.A. apartment — premieres today on Legendary Digital NetworksAlpha subscription streaming service.

“Sona” was created by and starring Clements (“Lizzie Bennet Diaries”), directed by Brendan Bradley and produced by Bradley’s Jigsaw Ensemble production company. Legendary’s Alpha, which has exclusive rights to “Sona” for six months, will release new episodes of the eight-part series on a weekly basis each Wednesday. The show is available at watch.sonaseries.com.

Set in a future where aliens are no longer welcome on Earth, the show stars Clements as Lt. Belyn Sona, a United Earth Space Corps officer who’s separated from her alien husband (Bradley) and jettisoned into space in a malfunctioning escape pod. Sona slowly unravels mentally and emotionally through a series of flashbacks as she drifts through space in isolation.

Wil Wheaton (“Star Trek: The Next Generation”) makes a cameo appearance in the second episode, airing Aug. 29, playing a human who’s not a big fan of the extraterrestrial immigrants. Wheaton was “my dream sci-fi guest star,” Clements said, saying that “Star Trek: The Next Generation” her “gateway drug into sci-fi.”

Popular on Variety

Clements started working on the project with Bradley last year. “It came from a place of making something completely on my own terms – and self-contained enough that I could shoot it in my own home,” she said.

The principal photography for “Sona” was shot in Clements’ apartment in Silver Lake, on a space-pod set they constructed in a 6-by-8-foot nook off her dining room. The set took three weeks to design and build, but according to Clements and Bradley, it cost less than renting a soundstage for one day.

“She performed it as a one-woman show, essentially,” Bradley said.

At that point, the duo turned to Kickstarter to raise money from fans to add post-production elements including VFX, sound design, an original score, and location shoots for flashback scenes (including the one with Wheaton). The “Sona” crew set a minimum goal of $10,000 with the Kickstarter campaign launched in February 2018 — which they raised in four hours — and ended up raising $30,558 in three weeks.

During the Kickstarter campaign, Legendary Digital president Adam Rymer reached out to Clements via Twitter DM to inquire about bringing “Sona” to Alpha and they inked a distribution pact.

As part of the deal, donors to the “Sona” Kickstarter fund will receive free access to Alpha (projectalpha.com) for a limited time to be able to watch the full series, in addition to posters, postcards, and other show-related swag. Legendary Digital Networks’ Alpha service regularly costs $4.99 per month, or $49.99 for a one-year subscription.

The cast of “Sona” includes Lauren Lopez, who co-starred with Clements in Kickstarter-funded series “Edgar Allan Poe’s Murder Mystery Dinner Party,” as the voice of on-board computer that Lt. Sona talks to. The score for the series was composed by Erik Scott Smith.

“We’re thrilled to add ‘Sona’ to our Alpha slate, because this gripping sci-fi tale is unlike anything we have seen before and because Ashley and [Bradley’s] passion for filmmaking echoes our own — doing whatever it takes to tell the best story,” Johnny Wickham, VP of development at Legendary Digital Networks, said in a statement.

Watch the trailer for “Sona”:

More Digital

  • YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki

    YouTube CEO to Burned-Out Creators: Data Shows It's OK to Take a Break From Posting

    Stressed-out YouTube creators anxious that their channels will take a traffic hit if they take a mental-health break shouldn’t worry, according to YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki: She says a data analysis showed that, on average, YouTubers get even more views when they return after a hiatus. In a Nov. 21 open letter to creators, Wojcicki [...]

  • Apple Computers Logo Placeholder

    Apple Eliminates Customer Reviews and Ratings From Online Store

    Apple has disabled the ability for customers to comment on and rate products on its online store — and the tech giant pulled down all the reviews and ratings that were previously left on the site. It’s not clear why Apple made the decision to kill off user reviews in its ecommerce storefronts. Some observers [...]

  • Google headquartersGoogle headquarters, Dublin, Ireland -

    Google Streamlines Movie Ticket Purchases With Its Assistant

    Google wants to make it easier to buy movie tickets on the web: The search giant has teamed up with Fandango, MovieTickets.com, AMC, MJR Theaters and others to streamline ticket buying across their sites. To do this, Google is making use of its Assistant, which automatically pops up when Android users search for a movie. [...]

  • Harmony-Korine-Duck-Duck-Snapchat-Spectacles

    Harmony Korine Shot a Short Film Entirely With Snap's Spectacles (EXCLUSIVE)

    Director Harmony Korine donned a pair of Snap’s high-end Spectacles 3 camera-enabled glasses to make an experimental short film — transforming Miami into a psychedelic swirl of colors, music and characters. It’s a proof-of-concept project: Snap enlisted the filmmaker to create the 10-minute short, called “Duck Duck,” to showcase the new Spectacles 3 hardware, which [...]

  • Eko - Wizard School Dropout

    Eko Launches Four Interactive Video Series, Including Two to Push Walmart Shopping

    Eko is launching its most ambitious bet yet to close the loop between interactive entertainment and ecommerce, with partner and investor Walmart. The interactive-video platform company debuted four original scripted series Thursday (Nov. 21). Two of them — EffinFunny’s “Wizard School Dropout” (pictured above), set in a Harry Potter-esque world, and “Timeline” from Olive Bridge [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content