Grinnell '91 Stars in Netflix 'One Day at a Time' Reboot
With its premiere on Friday, January 6, streaming entertainment company Netflix's reboot of the family sitcom One Day at a Time stars Shore alumnus Todd Grinnell '91 as Schneider, the owner of the building in which the show takes place.
This starring role follows appearances by Grinnell in more than 40 films and television series, including the indie hit Nesting, Hollywoodland, The Young Pope, Desperate Housewives, How I Met Your Mother, and Parks and Rec.
In reviewing the first season of the One Day at a Time reboot, Rolling Stone called this reimagining of the TV classic—in which a newly single Latina mother raises her teen daughter and tween son with the "help" of her old-school mom—"one of the best shows of the new year." The Los Angeles Times agreed: "It preserves the domestically framed, socially engaged flavor of the original while mixing in new verve. And it has turned out very well: smart, fun, bighearted...." The Washington Post went so far as so call the new series a "perfect revival... hope for the future of sitcoms."
The big new twist in Netflix's modern version is moving the focus to a Cuban family living in California: Penelope Alvarez, a former Army nurse and Afghan war vet, is the mother of two: daughter Elena and a son, Alex. The series also gains an extra generation in Penelope's feisty mother, Lydia.
Of Grinnell's role, Robert Lloyd of the the Los Angeles Times said, "Schneider, still called Schneider, has been transformed ... to an aging rich kid (Todd Grinnell) who owns the building where the Alvarez family lives—a sort of playboy hipster who comes into a room full of Cuban Americans wearing a Che Guevara T-shirt and says, 'Viva la revolution, am I right?' But, of course, he is only looking to belong. If anything, he is more of a presence than his predecessor, and he does do repairs."
Making a name for himself as one of Hollywood's rising young stars is just the start of Grinnell's accomplishments since completing Shore's ninth grade program in 1991. In 2007, Grinnell began volunteering for a non-profit that organized life-saving medical care for children around the world. With the organization, he made several trips to Africa to escort sick children back and forth to the U.S. for care.
Grinnell also is a co-founder of This Bar Saves Lives, a California snack-bar company with a give-back mission: for every bar sold, the company's non-profit partner makes a life-saving packet of food that goes to help children suffering from severe acute malnutrition in developing nations around the world.
In the past three years, the company has expanded into a a thousand Target stores and over 2,000 Starbucks outlets in the Western U.S. As a result, it's been able to donate millions of life-saving food packets. With the help of Grinnell, actor and co-founder Ryan Devlin, partner Ravi Patel, and This Bar Saves Lives founding partner, brand ambassador, and actress Kristen Bell, the company's work has been featured by The New York Times, among many other news and entertainment outlets.
"We started This Bar Saves Lives because it just made sense," says Grinnell. "If we could create a delicious, healthy snack and at the same time give a child who's starving a life-saving packet of food, then why not?"