Can ‘Bewitched’ Make TV Magic for a Second Time?
Reboots are a hot commodity in Hollywood these days, and now it looks like another classic TV show is set to make a comeback. Sony Pictures TV is reportedly working on bringing supernatural sitcom Bewitched back to the small screen, in conjunction with the show’s 50th anniversary.
According to Deadline, multiple networks have already expressed interest in nabbing the modern take on the comedy, which first ran on ABC from 1964 to 1972. The original sitcom, created by Sol Saks and executive produced by Harry Ackerman, starred Elizabeth Montgomery as a suburban housewife with magical powers who ends up marrying a mortal man. The show chronicled the way her superpowers constantly interfered with efforts to live a normal life. Bewitched brought in big ratings during its time on air, becoming the No. 2 show in America during its debut season.
The updated version of the long-running sitcom hails from production company Red Wagon Entertainment and screenwriters Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein, the same duo behind big screen romances like The Vow, Valentine’s Day, and He’s Just Not Into You. They also previously worked on Fox’s 2000 short-lived comedy drama series Opposite Sex.
This isn’t the first time Red Wagon has tried to revive Bewitched. In 2011, the company teamed up with Sony TV and Miss Congeniality writer Marc Lawrence in order to create a pilot for CBS, but the project ended up fizzling out before it ever came to air. Now, they’re giving it another go with a revamped team.
How the remake will be received, should it ever come to fruition, is hard to determine. Red Wagon hasn’t exactly had great results in the past. In addition to its failed CBS pilot, the company was also behind the 2005 film adaptation, directed by Nora Ephron and starring Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell. The movie version received overwhelmingly negative reviews and was considered a box office disappointment, grossing only a little over $131 million worldwide.
The film may not have fared as well as expected, but it seems as if there is still an audience for the show. The original is still in syndication and is also available on new streaming services, like Hulu, for longtime fans to catch up on and new fans to binge watch. Whether the remake will be able to draw attention from some of those same viewers depends on the story and casting. As of now, it remains unclear exactly how true the remake will stay to its predecessor. Per Deadline, there are no specific details regarding the reboot’s plotline yet, other than it will take place in modern times.
Still, Bewitched is far from the only classic show to get a remake. This season, it seems Hollywood is relying more heavily than ever on bringing back old favorites. Showtime recently announced that it is working on a reboot of the 1990 drama Twin Peaks. Meanwhile, Legendary TV is working on a remake of the cult 1960s sci-fi series Lost in Space, and Fox is developing an updated version of The Greatest American Hero. Movies also aren’t exempt from the trend. Small-screen reboots of Big, Real Genius, Problem Child, and Rush Hour are all also in the works, among others.