Fans everywhere were surprised when a YouTube trailer reenvisioned the classic Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, and that even included the Fresh Prince himself Will Smith. Since then there's been a lot of buzz around the trailer and what could come from it, and now there is a full reboot of the series in development. The new series will be in the same vein as Morgan Cooper's viral trailer, so this will be more drama than sitcom, and Cooper is working with Smith on the project. According to a report from THR, sources are saying it's been in the works for more than a year, and Cooper will co-write the script as well as direct and co-executive produce the series.
Peacock, HBO Max, and Netflix are all in on the bidding process for the series, though this would be a huge get for either HBO Max or Peacock. Peacock is NBC Universal's streaming service, and NBC is where the original series called home.
As for HBO Max, they currently have the streaming rights to the original series, so this would be a perfect compliment once fans binge the original series, and would give them another exclusive show to help build their subscriber base. Both services could use this project, but Netflix does have the most eyes of the bunch, so they could very well win out.
Smith will also serve as executive producer along with original producers Quincy Jones, Benny Medina, and series creators Andy and Susan Borowitz. Chris Collins will be at the helm as showrunner and is co-writing the script with Cooper.
Smith previously spoke to Cooper after watching the trailer, and he came away truly impressed and inspired by what they could explore in a more drama-focused series.
"Mike wrote from the first season of Fresh Prince," Smith said. "As funny as the episodes are, there was a whole other layer that you couldn't do, like, in a one-hour drama you can do eight-episode arcs. The dramatic versions of these ideas mean that you can use existing storylines but it's not going to seem like you're redoing an episode because the storyline's going to be brand new from the dramatic perspective."
Cooper was a big fan of the show and broke down how he came up with the idea.
"I grew up watching the show," Morgan said. "It's something that ever since I was a five I remember watching it and I remember seeing what you did onscreen, so it's always been a part of me. And so I remember driving down 71 in Kansas City and I was just thinking about the show, and I remember driving under this overpass and I would say I drove under it and when I came out I had the idea. It hit me like a ton of bricks, and I knew I had to tell that story."1comments