As we already know, Sony Pictures and producer Scott Rudin are developing a feature film based on the 1970s hit sitcom “Good Times” – news that, as I recall, many of you weren’t too enthused by – and “Black-Ish” creator Kenya Barris was hired last year to pen the proposed film’s script, apparently replacing Phil Johnston (“Wreck-It Ralph” and “Cedar Rapids”) who was initially hired.
Rudin will produce the film with Eli Bush, with a story (as was initially revealed in 2013, when the project was first announced) that will be set in the 1960s, although we know nothing more than that, as in what specific story the film will tell (likely about a black family to start with), what approach the studio and producers take, whether it will be a straight comedy, more of a drama, or a mixture of the two; and also whether all the characters from the TV series will transfer to the feature film? Questions, questions, questions…
And since it’ll be set in the 60s, we assume it will reflect the social and political climate of the time; there’s certainly plenty of relevant material to mine. It really could go down any number of paths.
Announced this evening, Sony is apparently thinking of doing even more with “Good Times,” as well as other classic Norman Lear series from the 1970s and 1980s, including “The Jeffersons” and “All in the Family.”
The studio’s television arm is said to be considering “miniseries reboots” of these sitcoms packaged in six-episode anthologies.
“There is some talk about doing some of the original shows, redoing them with today’s stars,” Lear told Variety. “There is a possibility that we’ll do ‘All in the Family,’ ‘Maude,’ ‘The Jeffersons,’ “Good Times.’”
The idea comes about as Sony preps for release a reboot of another Norman Lear 1980s series, “One Day at a Time,” which reimagines the story of a divorced mother raising two teenage daughters, as a series that follows 3 generations of the same Cuban-American family living in the same house: a newly divorced former military mother, her teenage daughter and tween son, and her old-school mother (the family in the original series was white). The all-new “One Day at a Time” is set to premiere on Netflix on January 6, 2017. And while the other “miniseries reboot” possibilities aren’t currently set up at any specific network or streaming service, Netflix may be the most appropriate home for them.
“We’re exploring it… It’s sort of tricky to figure out what the business of that is and what that would be and how it would work. But its something we’re trying to figure out,” Glenn Adilman, executive vice president of comedy development for Sony told Variety.
One can only wonder what they’ll do with a reimagined “Good Times” or “The Jeffersons” as miniseries, set in the present day.
So we apparently have a “Good Times” movie set in the 1960s, a “Good Times” miniseries set in the present, and a “Jeffersons” miniseries also set in the present-day, all possibly coming to a screen (theater or TV) near you in the future.
Everything old is new again…