Exclusive: The Munsters Back in Development at NBC
Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller is taking another stab at developing a remake of The Munsters at NBC.
Fuller has met with NBC executives in recent weeks about revisiting his adaptation of the 1960s black-and-white classic. Fuller first developed a The Munsters revival last year, but NBC ultimately passed on the script. Nonetheless, NBC Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt liked the general idea and asked Fuller to head back to the keyboard.
This isn't your mummy's The Munsters. While the original was a half-hour sitcom about blue collar Monster-Americans, Fuller's take on The Munsters will be an edgier, slightly darker hour-long show. Fuller is expected to more deeply explore the origins of how the residents of 1313 Mockingbird Lane came to be.
There will still be plenty of humor, and all the original characters are still there: Family patriarch Herman Munster; his vampy wife Lily Munster; eccentric Grandpa; eager son Eddie Munster; and strangely normal niece Marilyn Munster. Even Spot — Eddie's pet dragon — is expected to have a role.
NBC's sister Universal Media Studios is behind the show. Universal Studios produced the original The Munsters, which ran for 70 episodes on CBS from 1964 to 1966. The show was produced in black and white; Fuller's version, of course, would be in color — although likely muted.
Herman Munster was designed with Frankenstein's monster in mind — made famous by Universal's 1931 movie Frankenstein. (Since Universal owned the copyright, it was able to produce The Munsters without problem.) NBC clearly has monsters on the mind: It's also developing a new Frankenstein series from House executive producers Garrett Lerner and Russel Friend.
Fred Gwynne, Yvonne De Carlo and Al Lewis famously starred in the original. The Munsters has retained its popularity over the years, spawning the 1966 feature film Munster, Go Home! and a 1981 NBC TV movie, The Munsters' Revenge, which reunited the original cast.
A new cast then took over with the late 1980s syndication revival The Munsters Today, and yet two more casts were brought in to star in the 1995 Fox TV movie Here Come the Munsters, and 1996 TV movie sequel, Munsters' Scary Little Christmas.
The Munsters is one of several revivals that the networks are looking at as development season gets underway. CBS is considering a new take on Bewitched, while several book and movie titles are also making the rounds.
Fuller's credits also include Heroes, Wonderfalls and Dead Like Me.
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