Written by Barbara Kymlicka
Directed by Doug Campbell
The bread and butter of Lifetime movies are ridiculous scare films that show the danger of things like being pregnant, drugs, the internet, being involved in any way with a man, being involved in any way with a woman, or choking yourself to get high. So of course they have to chime in on the dangerous world of college-age girls sleeping with rich older men for money with Sugar Daddies. Spoiler alert: It’s dangerous!
Kara Jones (Taylor Gildersleeve) is your typical hardworking prelaw student who spends all her time waiting tables, working on papers, and having beer spilled on her. Oh, and she’s fired, because they hired too many people at the bar. She’s got no money and no job, thus can’t accept an unpaid internship somewhere that would rocket her future law career. Kara’s roommate Shawna (Ashley McCarthy) has no money problems, because she receives large checks thanks to the time she spends hanging out with a rich old guy. Real old. Old as balls. Old as balls that blast out dust. Into Shawna, hence how she makes her money. The lure of not being broke, dropping out, and being a waitress for the next decade is appealing to Kara, enough that she lets Shawna talk her into attending one of the meetup parties, which is packed with rich old guys and hot young thing. Kara gets uncomfortable, and she’s approached by a man named Grant Zager (Peter Strauss). Though he’s more charming than creepy, she still leaves. Grant remarks to his creepy bodyguard Peter (Timothy Brennen) that he loves a challenge.
Grant is one of those guys who has enough money to always get his way, and with Kara having no money, her family having no money (her dad (James C. Burns) was injured at work and the insurance company screwed them over, leaving them with huge medical bills). Kara allows herself to be talked into going out with Grant once, which means a dinner date in San Francisco (which they fly to by private jet, though it’s still less impressive to me, who lives in San Francisco!) He also dangles a $5000 check in front of her, promising she’ll get one every month, if…
So a year or two ago there was a big hullabaloo about how some college girls are having rich guys pay for their tuition and give them gifts in exchange for the girls sexing up the old guys when their viagra shipments came in. The media firestorm had all the usual overblown danger warnings about how this was going to definitely happen to your kid, unless you turned into the 11 o’clock news tonight to find out the signs!
Luckily for horny old rich dudes, not enough parents did tune in, so they’re still getting young ladies. There are even websites and services that connect the two parties. If you don’t think this is enough for a crazy Lifetime scare movie, then you must be from some alternate dimension! So here it is, with Sugar Daddies!
College student Kara is a bright girl from a middle income family pursuing a pre-law degree and working part time as a waitress to afford tuition. To further complicate her finances, she is offered a prestigious summer internship…unpaid. Kara’s roommate Lea, who always has the latest in designer clothes and expensive jewelry, introduces her friend to the world of “Sugar Daddies” — a group of older men who trade “favors” for money. Kara feels extremely conflicted but her mounting financial troubles win out and she descends into a murky arrangement with 55-year-old Grant. Kara tries to keep her relationship with Grant a secret, but eventually her two worlds collide causing collateral damage to her family and her future.
Uh oh! Poor Kara will have her parents be disappointed, and we can probably count on Lea being killed or put into a coma or something to highlight the dangers as Kara escapes by the skin of her teeth. Hey, is anyone blaming the unpaid internship? Because that’s something to make a Lifetime scare movie about. Interns who get unpaid interned to death!
Sugar Daddies was known as Sugar Babies in pre-production. It stars Taylor Gildersleeve (Affluenza) as Kara and Peter Strauss (Biker Mice from Mars) as Grant, with Alyson Stoner (Expecting Amish), Tiera Skovbye (The Unauthorized Saved by the Bell Story), Sarah Dugdale (Sorority Murder), and Kristina Tywoniuk.
Suger Daddies is directed by Monika Mitchell (Buried Secrets) and written by David DeCrane (The Girl He Met Online, Guilty at 17, and Fugitive at 17) and Becca Topol (The Ramen Girl)
Sugar Daddies premiers Saturday, January 10 on Lifetime! Catch it unless a rich guy gives you a DVR, then you can just tape it for later.
Photo via Lifetime/Charles Christopher