Five early ’90s movies that would make great TV shows

We’d rather see new, fresh, original material on TV, but since most TV execs seem to believe that’s nutsy cuckoo, here, courtesy of the Bitter Script Reader, are some excellent film adaptation suggestions:


by the Bitter Script Reader

This was a depressing TV development season for new ideas. Over 30 scripts that were bought were based on movies, all part of the latest trend of hedging bets by banking on a familiar title to grab the attention of an audience. If you’re interested in a complete accounting of all of these projects that were purchased last fall, check out thisSlashfilm ranking of the 31 properties that were being rebooted in one form or another:

A number of these just sound dubious on their face. The fact that the 1990 film Problem Child apparently has more value 25 years after its debut than a fresh idea would is just a kick in the balls to creative television. Look, I SAW Problem Child in theatres – TWICE. I was also ten, and let me tell you, you age out of that humor fast. (This is backed up by the grosses for the sequel, which only made half as much just a year later.) Buffy the Vampire Slayer will always be the rebuttal to a concern that a weak film can’t make a good TV show… but is anyone really dying to see the further adventures of Junior?

Even in 1991, would this have been a good idea for a series? Hell, Uncle Buck (another property ordered to pilot) wasn’t even a good idea for a series IN 1990!

I don’t think all of these ideas are terrible (The Truman Show could be pretty interesting, and as a fan of Kevin Biegel and Mike Royce, I’m pulling for their Big limited series.) Still, looking at that slate, my heart goes out to the original ideas that were passed over in favor ofBachelor Party. It’s really weird when a network is trying to adapt a show based on a film old enough to be in the desired ratings demographic.

Lest you think I’m picking on the film’s age, after giving the matter some thought, I came up with five early nineties movies that might actually make for good TV series. So if you’re looking to get a jump on the next development season, start tracking down who controls the rights to these:

Dave (1993) – A normal guy becomes the President. Yeah, you could go the single camera route with this, sort of a The West Wing meetsScrubs, but the real money probably comes from doing this as a three-camera sitcom. Cast it with Matthew Perry, Tim Meadows or Bill Hader. (My first pick would have been Stephen Colbert, but he’s not going to be available.)

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