heathers

TV Land is moving forward with its Heathers anthology series. Today, the network ordered a pilot based on the 1988 cult film. For years, a remake and sequel were talked about or rumored, but back in 2009, it was decided television was where the modern update of Heathers would go. Directing the pilot is Leslye Headland (BacheloretteSleeping with Other People), whose name raises our expectations for this particular film to TV adaptation.

Below, learn more about the Heathers pilot.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Headland will shoot the black comedy’s pilot this Fall. Set in present day, the outcasts of the past have become the new Heathers. Heather McNamara, for example, is now a black lesbian; screenwriter Jason Micallef (Butter) has written Heather Duke as a male who identifies as gender-queer whose birth name is Heath; and THR compares Heather Chandler to Martha Dumptruck from the original film. If all goes according to plan, each season will follow a new group of Heathers.

The Heathers TV show was originally going to be about Veronica (played by Winona Ryder in the film) moving back to Sherwood with her teenage daughter. Veronica’s daughter would then have to deal with the “Ashley’s,” the daughters of the surviving “Heathers.” The plot must’ve undergone some changes over the years because there’s no mention of Veronica or her daughter in The Hollywood Reporter’s story. It’s unclear if there’s still a notable connection to Michael Lehmann‘s film, which was about Veronica and the rebel of the school, JD (Christian Slater), who’s far worse than a High School’s typical bad boy, killing the Heathers.

THR’s insiders compare the series’ anthology approach to Fargo — which has become a go-to reference for TV to film adaptations. The news of a Heathers TV show likely puts a bad taste in some fans’ mouths, but it’s worth nothing more than a few people also thought FX remaking Fargo was a terrible idea, and handing the pilot off to Leslye Headland was a step in the right direction for TV Land’s series. In a statement, the director expressed her enthusiasm for the original film and this television remake:

I related with it so much. I can’t believe they got away with so much. The movie was a huge influence on an entire generation and it’ll be nice to introduce this to a new generation. The idea that I get to bring his vision to light is a dream come true.

Headland wrote the About Last Night remake, helmed an episode of Terriers, and wrote and directed Bachelorette and Sleeping with Other PeopleBachelorette isn’t a comedy without its moments, but the quality of Sleeping with Other People — a funny, sexy, and honest romantic comedy — should be enough to make one interested in whatever she directs next, including the Heathers pilot.

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