“B Positive” co-star Annaleigh Ashford revisits her Broadway roots in the CBS sitcom’s new opening credits — reminiscent of a splashy musical stage number.
The three-minute montage, shot over four days on the Warner Bros. lot in Burbank, features Ashford in character as Gina on “B Positive” — who, in the Season 2 premiere, inherited $48 million from an appreciative resident and bought the assisted living facility in which she works.
The new opening credits reflect the show’s shift in tone from last season’s arc, in which party girl Gina offered to donate a kidney to straight-laced single dad Drew (Thomas Middleditch) — a high school acquaintance — while he underwent dialysis and hoped she kept herself healthy for the transplant (which was a success). This season, Drew professed his love for Gina. (Middleditch, wearing a tux, also appears in the new opening sequence.)
“[Series creator] Chuck Lorre called me and told me the idea of how he wanted the show to transition,” Ashford, 36, told The Post. “He said, ‘I think it’s really important that we change the opening credits to reflect what’s going to be happening in the story. I think we should celebrate the assisted living facility and celebrate the magic of a musical number and let’s use some of your talents in this area.’”
Ashford’s impressive Broadway resume includes “Legally Blonde,” “Kinky Boots,” “Sunday in the Park with George” (opposite Jake Gyllenhaal) and her Tony-winning performance in “You Can’t Take it With You.”
The new opening, choreographed by Spencer Liff, is set at Gina’s assisted living facility, she croons the show’s theme song while interacting with the “residents” in several different scenarios — including an Esther Williams-type swimming pool number.
“The physical therapy sequence has people doing stretches and someone on a gurney doing really fabulous body work,” Ashford said. “We have people tap-dancing with walkers, with IV poles and using balance balls, and we have a Bingo sequence doing fun choreography with Bingo stamps and Bingo cards.
“We did the synchronized swimming segment with incredible performers called the Aquadettes,” she said. “They’re a swimming team over the age of 65 and we did a whole section with them. I’m so bad at swimming — I can swim, if I got stuck in the middle of water I could float on my back for four hours — but these women were treading water for an hour, and one of them was 95. I couldn’t even do that for two minutes. They were helping me.
“It felt really good to put on some sequins. I’m not going to lie to you,” she said. “I was really sore on the third day. I was getting my hair and makeup done and I had to ice my shins. I was like, ‘What is going on with my body?’ All of the dancers [on the segment], their backgrounds are on Broadway and many of them have been dancing out here in LA for years. They were like, ‘Girl, the floor [on the soundstage] is concrete, you put ice on your shins at night.’ I learned something new.”
The new opening credits can vary episode-to-episode. “It gives the editors and producers a lot of variety about what they can use,” Ashford said. “There are many different versions of what we filmed.
“It’s so relevant, because Betty White just passed and so many people are watching ‘The Golden Girls,’” she said. “There were multiple opening-credit versions for that series and every once in a while we get the ‘long’ version. There’s something exciting and fun about that.
“The people in my life who watch [‘B Positive’] will text me when the credits are a little longer or a little different. It’s an extension of the storytelling we’re doing within the 22 minutes we have with the audience.”
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