A ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ TV Series Is In Development
Well, this is an interesting one… David Gordon Green, the man behind the ‘Halloween’ film series revival, is working on a tv series based around classic Burt Reynolds movies ‘Smokey and the Bandit’, with UCP and Seth MacFarlane’s Fuzzy Door.
For those of you not old enough to remember the movies, they were a series of films which premiered from 1977 to 1983 starring Burt Reynolds, Sally Field, Jackie Gleason, and Jerry Reed. The first movie revolved around Bo “Bandit” Darville (Reynolds) and Cledus “Snowman” Snow (Reed), two bootleggers attempted to illegally transport 400 cases of beer from Texas to Georgia. Snowman drove the beer truck whilst Bandit drove a Pontiac Trans Am to distract the cops, including Texas county sheriff Buford T. Justice (Gleason), as he tried to apprehend them.
According to Variety, the new tv series is “an epic adventure of family, small-town crime, unlikely heroes, legend and legacy. Inspired by the genre of 70s and 80s drive-in double-features, the series will explore the crossroads where humble realities meet those larger-than-life, all in a blast of tailpipe exhaust.”
The series is being written by David Gordon Green and Brian Sides, who was previously a staff writer on Green’s adult animated series ‘Good Vibes’ and has become a regular collaborator. As a director and EP, Green worked on ‘Vice Principals’ and ‘The Righteous Gemstones’ with Danny McBride (who also co-wrote 2018’s ‘Halloween’). He also directed the film’s ‘Pineapple Express’ and ‘Your Highness’.
“Growing up in the south, ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ was an iconic franchise for me,” commented Green, who is also set to direct the pilot. “The legacy of these characters is a playground of swagger and sass that I’m excited to dig into.”
Seth MacFarlane and Erica Huggins are exec producing for Fuzzy Door under their overall deal with UCP, alongside Green, Danny McBride, Jody Hill and Brandon James for Rough House Pictures.
“When UCP mentioned ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ we were immediately drawn to it,” adds Huggins. “We knew we had to remain faithful to its original setting in the South, and find an authentic voice. David’s immediate interest and his unique perspective and love for the original made it possible. ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ was a very cool and irreverent film at the time and we hope to achieve that same feeling in the show.”
‘Smokey and the Bandit’ is still only in development at UCP, so there is no channel attached or release date. However, UCP (Universal Content Productions) is part of NBCUniversal, so that gives you some idea of where it could land, should it go to series. We’ll let you know when we hear more.
Dave has over 20 years experience in the digital industry, and is founder and editor of Geektown. Obviously a huge geek himself, he can often be found in front of the latest tv show or movie, on various video games, or with his head in a comic book.