Here come the remakes.
Following a slew of family fare and procedural pilot orders, the broadcast networks have now turned their attention to reboots with NBC handing out a pilot pickup to a Cruel Intentions TV follow-up.
NBC’s Cruel Intentions picks up more than 15 years after the 1999 movie left off. The drama follows the beautiful and cunning Kathryn Merteuil (played by Sarah Michelle Gellar in the film) as she vies for control of Valmont International as well as the soul of Bash Casey, son of her brother, the late Sebastian Valmont, and Annette Hargrove. Upon discovering his late father’s legacy in a hidden journal, Bash is introduced to a world of sex, money, power and corruption he never could have imagined.
The small-screen sequel, which landed at NBC with a penalty attached in October, hails from Cruel Intentions writer-director Roger Kumble and producer Neal H. Moritz. They are joined by Lindsey Rosin and Jordan Ross, the duo behind the recent musical parody of the pic staged in Los Angeles. The pair’s send-up at L.A.’s Rockwell Table & Stage in May attracted the film’s four central stars, including Selma Blair, Reese Witherspoon, Ryan Phillippe and Gellar. Kumble has remained in touch with Ross and Rosin after blessing the musical parody.
Kumble, Ross and Rosin will pen the script and exec produce the Sony Pictures Television project, with Kumble also attached to direct the pilot. The potential series hails from SPT-based Moritz and his Original Film banner. Moritz and Pavun Shetty also will exec produce. The movie, produced by SPT sibling Columbia Pictures, grossed $75 million on a $10.5 million budget.
Cruel Intentions marks the latest film-to-TV adaptation to land a pilot order this season. It joins CBS’ Drew, based on the Nancy Drew character from the iconic mystery book series, and Training Day, which also picks up 15 years after the movie; Fox’s The Exorcist and Urban Cowboy (though the later, developed off-cycle, will not move forward); NBC’s straight-to-series Taken prequel; and The CW’s Frequency reimagining. Key to their success is having the original producers attached, which Cruel Intentions has in spades. This TV season has featured several movie-to-TV reboots, including Fox’s now-canceled Minority Report, CBS’ Limitless (which has performed well) and upcoming Rush Hour and Uncle Buck, with the latter at ABC.
Remakes and reboots remain a high priority as broadcast, cable networks and streaming services alike look for built-in fan bases and marketable commodities in a bid to cut through the increasingly cluttered original scripted landscape. Also still in the works are reboots of My Best Friend’s Wedding at ABC, which also has a female-fronted take on Fantasy Island, and Fox’s readying Behind Enemy Lines, among others.
Original story appeared in THR.