Word is oozing out of Hollywood today that the ephemeral romantic adventure film Romancing the Stone is going to become a TV series. Sweet. Adapting films for ill-advised (and usually short-lived) TV series is a hallowed Hollywood tradition, albeit one that proves misguided almost every time.
With the pedigree of TV adaptations before it, I wouldn’t get too attached to Romancing the Stone: The Series! or whatever it’s going to be called. These things have a way of not only getting canceled, but completely disappearing from the cultural consciousness in the bat of an eye just like these shows did.
None of the charm of the original, but with a lot more Jennifer Aniston. The role of Ferris was played by some kid that exuded all the bad characteristics of Zack Morris with none of the good ones. If you wanted to experience the charm of Ferris Bueller in a setting a few years later, I would strongly suggest Parker Lewis Can’t Lose, which much better capture the spirit of Ferris while also featuring characters that aren’t cartoonish photocopies of those in the original film.
The 1992 show was created and produced by George Lucas, which means it could have been terrific or absolutely ridiculous. As it would turn out, the show was only pretty ridiculous, not bad enough to the point that people remember it. Sort of like Ron Artest.
George Lucas handpicked River Phoenix to play the titular character, but it turns out that such a request is only effective if the person in question accepts the request. Phoenix did not, so the role was played by Sean Patrick Flannery, who was still a few years away from ripping out my heart and stomping on it as that bald albino, Powder. The hour long show had the weight of Lucas behind it, but little else and was canned after 14 months, which somehow is listed as “three seasons” on Wikipedia.
The TV adaptation of the iconic film didn’t aspire to offer the same scoio-cultural commentary of the 1995 film, nor did it aspire to even offer the same level of charm or wit. While Alicia Silverstone, Breckin Meyer, and Paul Rudd didn’t find their way back to the series, the characters of Dionne, Murray, and Amber were all played by their original actors.
The show ran out its first season in the TGIF lineup on ABC, but then got sent down to the bush leagues at UPN where it ran for another respectable two seasons before fading into the ether.