The Wonder Years reboot taking shape over at ABC has cast actor Elisha "EJ" Williams as it lead for the pilot episode. According to reports by THR, Williams is playing "Dean, an inquisitive and hopeful 12-year-old who's coming of age in a turbulent time and trying to figure out his place both within his family and in the larger world. Dean is a little insecure, a tad awkward and a bit self-conscious, but he is determined to make his mark on the world around him." The Wonder Years pilot is being directed by Empire creator Lee Daniels, who is boldly re-imagining the franchise for the modern age.
Original Wonder Years original series star Fred Savage will both direct and executive produce The Wonder Years reboot, along with co-creator Neal Marlens, who will act as a consultant. In a touching video you can watch below, Savage calls up Elisha Williams on a video call, in order to "pass the torch" and deliver the good news that he had landed the lead role in the new Wonder Years:
Here's the previously-released synopsis for The Wonder Years reboot:
"How a black middle class family in Montgomery, Alabama in the turbulent late 1960's, the same era as the original series, made sure it was The Wonder Years for them too."
Saladin K. Patterson (The Big Bang Theory, Frasier, The Bernie Mac Show) is set to write the pilot and executive produce with Daniels; Lee Daniels' production company member Marc Velez also exec producing.
The original Wonder Years series centered on Kevin Arnold, a man telling stories from his adolescence/teenage years (played by Fred Savage) growing up in an average middle-class American town, in the turbulent era of the 1960s. The series was unique for its twist on the standard sitcom formula, as the older Kevin Arnold/narrator provides an adult's deeper reflection (and often ironic humor) about his childhood experiences. The Wonder Years has been copied many times since its run, inspiring shows like Malcolm in the Middle, and The Goldbergs.
The Wonder Years reboot is in development. It will air on ABC.