Orange Is The New Black will span six series this summer, yet the inspiration for the gripping plot comes from just one book. The Netflix drama, which documents life inside an all-female maximum security prison, is based on Piper Kerman’s novel of the same name. Protagonist Piper, who is known as Piper Chapman, penned her memoirs of her 12 years behind bars which was since turned into a hit TV drama and swiftly became a New York Times bestseller. The author has insisted although her book strongly inspired the programme it is not wholly based on it for a documentary style drama.
Actress Taylor Schilling takes on the main role of the character, who will star in her sixth series in July. The prison drama has gone from strength to strength since its debut back in 2013, telling the story of Piper and her experiences in Litchfield prison as a 24 year old, who initially flew to Belgium with a suitcase of money intended for a west African drug lord. Then followed a rollercoaster incarceration which saw Piper caught up in a drug ring and a relationship with the female ringleader. In the memoirs, Piper terms the rogue bunch a “clique of impossibly stylish and cool lesbians in their mid-30s” and there followed the inspiration for the online TV series.
The author, who now works in a communication firm, has previously spoken out about the book and TV series, branding some of the plot “pure fiction.”She told npr.org: “The Netflix series is an adaptation, and there are tremendous liberties. What that means is that when you watch the show, you will see moments of my life leap off the screen, such as Larry Bloom’s proposal to Piper Chapman, [which] is not so very different from the way my husband, Larry Smith, proposed to me.”She added: “But there are other parts of the show which are tremendous departures and pure fiction.”It has been confirmed that Orange Is The New Black will return to Netflix on July 27.
On July 26, Netflix released the seventh and final season of its hit series, Orange Is the New Black, concluding its six-year run. While the finale brought closure to a series of storylines, lots of questions remain, like how the show got its name in the first place.
Orange Is the New Black is based on a book
The prison drama is based on the real experiences of Piper Kerman. In the show, Kerman is known as Piper Chapman (played by Taylor Schilling).
In 2010, Kerman published a memoir of the same name. The show isn’t a docudrama, but the premise of the series is similar to Kerman’s experience: She met a woman who turned her on to drug smuggling, but it eventually catches up to her. She ends up pleading guilty to drug smuggling and money laundering before being sentenced to prison.
Why Orange Is the New Black is ending
As they say, all things must come to an end, and it looks like it’s about that time for the hit Netflix series.
“After seven seasons, it’s time to be released from prison. I will miss all the bada** ladies of Litchfield and the incredible crew we’ve worked with,” show creator Jenji Kohan said in an October 2018 statement (via Deadline). “My heart is orange but fade to black.”
Actress Beth Dover, who plays the controversial Linda Ferguson, elaborated on the decision to end the show in a July 16 interview with PopCulture.com, telling the site, “It just felt like the right time.”
“I think Jenji always wanted seven seasons. You wrap it up in seven, and as much as I’d love to keep doing this forever and ever, it just felt like the right time to do it,” Dover explained.
But don’t get too down about it. There’s a chance the show could get a sequel series. Lionsgate TV Group chairman Kevin Beggs told The Hollywood Reporter in November 2018 that Lionsgate is considering one, but that the timing has to be “right.”
Season 7 is wild
We’re not going to spoil it for those who haven’t seen it, but there’s a lot going on in Season 7. As you probably know, Season 6 ended with Chapman’s release from prison, and now she has to transition back into society. But it’s not that easy. She makes copies in an office, meets with a probation officer for drug tests, and struggles to make friends.
Meanwhile, the ladies of Litchfield Penitentiary are dealing with the rigamarole of prison life. Some are dealing with recent verdicts, feuds, loss, and more. Chapman’s wife, Alex Vause (Laura Prepon) even appears to be struggling with something. One scene from the trailer shows Vause fighting back tears while talking to Chapman. “It’s good to see you,” she tells Chapman through tears.