Norman Lear, creator of classics such as The Jeffersons, Good Times, All in the Family, Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman and Maude, has signed a two-year first-look deal with Sony Pictures Television. The deal allows him and his Act III production company the ability to reboot his past television hits. The news ironically coincides with Lear’s 96th birthday.
“I couldn’t be prouder and more excited about joining Sony Pictures Television, who has the guts to go with a kid,” Lear said.
The deal comes after Lear’s success with Netflix’s One Day at a Time, which is a reboot featuring a Latinx family starring Justina Machado and Rita Moreno. The reboot is in theme with Lear’s sensibility, which usually combines comedy with highly political and social commentary. Some of the topics Lear has touched on in his shows include civil rights, race relations, women’s rights, economic strife and classism.
“We couldn’t be more thrilled to be expanding our relationship with Brent and Norman,” said SPT President Jeff Frost and Co-Presidents Jason Clodfelter and Chris Parnell according to Deadline. “Norman is an icon in our industry and it’s a dream come true to be working with him. We’re excited to create more magic with Norman and Brent.”
The new deal could mean we could see reinventions of The Jeffersons and Good Times at some point in the future. With that prospect, there’s bound to be some contention–these are classics, and no one wants their classics messed with. However, reboots of Good Times and The Jeffersons might be called for in the type of political and social climate we’re in. At any rate, it wouldn’t hurt to see how these reboots would tackle today’s hot-button issues like police brutality, racism in the justice system, #blackgirlmagic, gender relations, and “woke” culture.
As for Good Times, this is the second time a reboot has come up in recent years.
Sony Pictures and producer Scott Rudin were announced to be developing a feature film based on the 1970s hit sitcom, with Black-Ish creator Kenya Barris hired to pen the proposed film’s script, apparently replacing Phil Johnston who was initially hired. Rudin would produce the film with Eli Bush, with a story (as was initially revealed in 2013, when the project was first announced) that will be set in the 1960s, although we know nothing more than that at this time.