Also On Monday: New ‘Lying Game’

Already the home of one adaptation of Sara Shepard young adult books with lying as a theme – the hit “Pretty Little Liars” – ABC Family is rolling out a second series drawn from a Shepard series of books, lies and attractive young girls.

“The Lying Game” (ABC Family, 9 p.m.) stars Alexandra Chando as both a rich girl and the poorer twin she thought she never had. They get together, change identities as they seek the truth about their own birth parents.

It’s a storyline that goes back to Shakepearean times, and provided a tale for Twain. But it is also the basis for an upcoming fall show on The CW, “Ringer.”

“Essentially our show is very different.,” says producer Charles Pratt, Jr. “While we have the mystery elements and that kind of thing, we do appeal to the romantic side of things, the teenager, the concept of friends, the concept of your search for your biological parents. And that seems to be inherent in the age of the character, that she is a teenager just both of them searching for the circumstances of their separation and all the things that have happened since.”

Alexandra Chando, who stars in the two roles as twins, says she was lucky to have come from a place she could hone her skills — soaps.

“Daytime certainly primed me for a role like this. Daytime is very challenging in the way that you are doing 30 pages a day,” says the former star on “As the World Turns.” And going through so many changes in a single character, she says, “really helped me to just get me ready for a character like Sutton or like Emma.”

She also prepared by reading the Shepard series. “It really helped to paint a picture of the life that Emma was living before she took over Sutton’s life.” Also, she had lunch with the author. “It was really enlightening to talk to Sara about it and get her take on it,” she says.

But Pratt says the series goes its own way from the book series.

“It really became a challenge of what part of the book do we really want to accentuate and build on and not disappoint anybody who loves the books going forward,” he says.

So he gave characters a new back stories. Also: “We combined some characters, but the same mystery elements continue through.

“It was an enormous challenge,” he says, “to put together a show that can stand on its own feet and not be wedded to the books.”

“The Lying Game” starts tonight at 9 p.m. on ABC Family.

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