Looks like Bill Murray‘s 1981 film Stripes will be getting that special “CBS comedy touch,” as word has come down that The Eye Network is developing a series based on the military comedy. Original film director Ivan Reitman is expected to direct and executive produce via his Montecito Picture Company. The Whitest Kids U’Know‘s Trevor Moore, Sam Brown, and Zach Cregger are on board to write the single camera series; and will also serve as executive producers.
Similar to the original Murray/Harold Ramis film, CBS’ series will follow “a perennial rebellious outsider who finally finds his purpose in life when he joins the US military and must unite a group of ragtag eccentrics.” The series has a tough act to follow: the 80’s film grossed $85+ million during its theatrical run, and has developed an avid fan following over the past 35+ years.
John Winger (Bill Murray) is a cab driver who, in the span of a few hours, loses his job, his apartment, his car, and his girlfriend. Realizing that he is a loser with no prospects, he decides to join the Army. Talking his best friend Russell Ziskey (Harold Ramis), a teacher of English as a second language, into joining with him, they go to a recruiting office and are soon sent off to basic training.
Sony Pictures Television will produce Stripes in association with CBS Television Studios. Julius Goldy Sharpe and Tom Pollock have also signed up as executive producers; with Amie Karp and Peter Fried producing.
Interestingly enough, this is only the latest attempt by Hollywood to totally strip mine my lifetime of fond cinematic memories. Fox is currently working up a series pilot inspired by the Arnold Schwarzenegger/Jamie Lee Curtis/young Eliza Dushku (go on…look it up…I’ll wait…) movie True Lies, with the film’s director James Cameron attached as an executive producer. CBS is also looking to develop a series based on James Ellroy‘s novel L.A. Confidential, which was adapted into an award-winning film in 1997.
One can only hope that Stripes is able to reach the high bar of comedic excellence established by such classics as 2 Broke Girls and Two-And-A-Half Men…that’s the fact, Jack!