Three Classic Movies Get TV Spin-Offs – Heathers, Psycho And The Apartment

It so happens that Winona Ryder and I have something in common: we both rate the screenplay for Heathers as the very best, top class, triple A stuff. She’s got a vested interest, of course – she was in the film.

For years, Ryder promised that a sequel was coming along. She even claimed that writer Daniel Waters and director Michael Lehman were deliberately covering up their work on such a film.

But it never happened.

Sort-of-kinda until now. Which is to say, there’s a new Heathers sequel coming to TV but it has nothing to do with Waters or Lehman, and probably won’t be secure the services of Ms. Ryder either, despite featuring her character, Veronica Sawyer, at the heart of the story.

The TV show is set up to go at Bravo. Their press release gives this account of its premise:

Present day update of the cult classic 1980’s film that picks up 20 years later with Veronica moving back to Sherwood with her teenage daughter, who enters high school to deal with the next generation of mean girls, the “Ashley’s,” daughters of the surviving “Heathers.”

Surviving Heathers? But…

Anyway, here’s the other part of Bravo’s release on this show:

From Sony Pictures Television and writer and executive producer Mark Rizzo (The Man Date, Zip), executive producer Jenny Bicks (The Big C, Men In Trees) and Tom Rosenberg and Gary Lucchesi serving as executive producers for Lakeshore Entertainment.

Also coming to Bravo, in a seeming attempt to raid my shelf of favourite Blu-rays for TV spin-off potential, is another “next generation” reinvention. Here’s the blurb for the station’s goggleboxification of Billy Wilder’s The Apartment:

From Uni TV and writer and executive producer, Jessica Queller (Gossip Girl, Gilmore Girls, Felicity) and executive produced by Karey Burke and Todd Holland (Go On, Free Agents) for Dark Toy Entertainment

After the death of their mother, two 20-something siblings unexpectedly inherit the love nest where their mother had an 18 year affair. After the initial shock that their mother was not who they thought she was, they begin to rent out the beautiful Upper West Side apartment to people who want a private space to have their own extra-marital affairs.

It doesn’t seem to be literally or officially a spin-off of The Apartment, but it’s movie-detail accurate, right down to the Upper West Side location. And, obviously, the title.

So I wouldn’t be surprised to see that change, distancing the show from the film and marking it out as something more like a knock-off.

Much further into development is A&E’s show Bates Motel, another prequel to Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho. This one comes from Lost‘s Carlton Cuse and will star Vera Farmiga as Norma Bates, Norman’s mother.

The Hollywood Reporter got to premiere this poster for the show.

The show is just headed into production now.

I wonder if this is going to be a continuing trend now, with more and more classic movies turning into TV shows? It’s not new, of course, but there certainly does seem to be a lot of it happening right now.


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