The classic 1989s buddy cop comedy feature Turner & Hooch is getting a TV series treatment for Disney+. I have learned that the Disney streaming platform is working on a Turner & Hooch TV series adaptation from Burn Notice creator Matt Nix and 20th Century Fox TV where Nix is under an overall deal.
Your Complete Guide to Pilots and Straight-to-Series orders
Details about the series are scarce, but it is believed to be keeping the premise of the original movie, which starred Tom Hanks, and also revolves around a police detective and his dog, I hear. The TV series had been in the works for awhile. It has been gathering momentum recently, and I hear it is heating up for a green light. Reps for Disney+ and 20th TV would not comment.
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Nix is the Turner & Hooch series writer/executive producer. 20th Century Fox TV, part of Disney TV Studios, is the studio. The project marks the latest cooperation between studio divisions on both side of the Disney-Fox merger as 20th TV is tackling a classic Touchstone Pictures title.
The 1989 movie, starring Hanks as Detective Scott Turner and Beasley the Dog as Hooch, the large, slobbery dog he reluctantly takes in following the murder of his longtime friend and the dog’s owner. The film, which co-starred Mare Winningham and Craig T. Nelson, was a boxoffice hit, grossing $71 million on a $13 million budget. It also became an enduring pop culture staple, getting frequent references in other movies and TV shows.
This is not the first attempt to mount a Turner & Hooch TV series. An ABC half-hour pilot, produced by Touchstone TV and starring Thomas F. Wilson as Det. Scott Turner and Beasley the Dog reprising his role, did not go to series but aired under the ABC’s Wonderful World of Disney banner in July 1990.
For Disney+, Turner & Hooch fits into the streamer’s strategy of mining the combined company’s movie and TV libraries for new content. The originals that helped launch Disney+ included a Lady & the Tramp movie reboot, a High School Musical series and the Star Wars drama The Mandalorian.
Coming up are a TV series based on the Fox movie Love, Simon and a Lizzy McGuire revival, with a slew of other reboots in the works.
Nix most recently served as creator, executive producer and showrunner on the 20th TV/Marvel drama series The Gifted, which aired on Fox for two seasons.
Joby Harold, whose writing credits include Awake, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, and Zack Snyder’s upcoming Army of the Dead, has been hired as the new writer of the untitled Obi-Wan Kenobi series on Disney+. Get the details below.
Variety has the news, reporting that Harold is taking over as the show’s writer after the show was shut down earlier this year. Drive screenwriter Hossein Amini turned in scripts, sets were built, staff were hired, and star Ewan McGregor was back on board…but Lucasfilm decided to pull the plug and start from scratch, throwing out Amini’s scripts and beginning the search for a new writer to come in and take over. That search, which at one time reportedly included The Mandalorian veterans Dave Filoni and Christopher Yost as options, is now over, as the studio has hired Joby Harold to get things back on track.
Harold is an unexpected choice for this job, since he’s arguably better known as a producer than a writer at this point. He’s produced or executive produced Edge of Tomorrow, Robin Hood, John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum, and the WGN America series Underground. On the writing side, he wrote and directed his first feature film, Awake, back in 2007, and a decade passed before his script for King Arthur: The Legend of the Sword was eventually produced. That film was supposed to launch a six-movie franchise, but didn’t perform well enough to even get a single sequel, let alone five. Army of the Dead is in post-production and he’s on board to write another Transformers project, but those are the only four writing credits listed.
More to come…
Disney+ may benefit from further delays with the studio's theatrical releases as more movies may be going directly to the streaming service in the future. This, according to former Disney CEO and current Executive Chairman Bob Iger. It was recently revealed that Artemis Fowl will debut on Disney+ sometime this year, skipping a theatrical release. As Iger explains, that may not be the only title to make the move from theatrical to streaming, but don't expect to see it happen with the studio's upcoming tentpole releases.
Given what's going on in the world right now, most movie theaters are shut down entirely and virtually all major releases through June have been delayed. Some have wondered if Disney might put movies like Black Widow or Mulan on Disney+ instead. While that won't be happening, Bob Iger isn't ruling out other movies making the shift. Here's what Iger had to say about it in a recent interview.
'There are some we've decided to put on Disney+. We already announced one, Artemis Fowl, that would have been released in theaters. Others we've simply delayed. In some cases we've moved things onto Disney+ faster than we would have. Frozen 2 was one of them, but Onward would be the biggest example. It was in theaters when this happened.'
'We moved to a pay-per-view period for a couple of weeks where people could buy it and own it. And then we ended up putting it on Disney+. In terms of movies going ahead after Artemis, there may be a few more that we end up putting directly onto Disney+, but for the most part a lot of the big tentpole Disney films, we'll simply wait for slots. In some cases we've announced new ones already, but later on in the calendar.'
There is a lot to unpack here. Black Widow and several other delayed movies were recently given new release dates as Disney reshuffled its 2020/2021 calendar. Black Widow and other big-budget tentpoles stand to make far more money in theaters, even with a relatively uncertain future ahead, than they could possibly generate via streaming. So putting movies like them directly on Disney+ doesn't make that much business sense.
In the meantime, taking riskier projects such as Artemis Fowl and giving Disney+ subscribers something flashy and exclusive is helpful. But what other movies might fit the bill for streaming debuts? The New Mutants perhaps? Whatever the case, as Bob Iger points out, the studio is content to wait until things return to normal. Disney, more than any other studio in Hollywood, is capable of raking in big dollars at the box office. So this truly isn't that surprising.
Other studios, on the other hand, may see value in doing a VOD/Digital release. Universal kicked that door wide open a couple of weeks back by putting recent releases such as The Invisible Man and The Hunt online. Trolls: World Tour, which was destined for theaters, will arrive digitally this month. Disney has not yet set a premiere date for Artemis Fowl, but it's...