NBC’s proposed reboot of Murder, She Wrote is D.O.A. The network’s plan to revive one of the most successful TV series of the 1980s with a revamped, rebooted version starring Octavia Spencer — who won the 2011 Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her work in The Help — was met with a lot of buzz when it was first announced in October.
Unlike the original series, in which Angela Lansbury’s amateur sleuth Jessica Fletcher solved murders in the tiny Maine enclave of Cabot Cove, Octavia was tapped to play an aspiring mystery writer who worked as a hospital administrator and recently-published novelist and often ended up taking part in actual murder investigations.
Lansbury, star of the original series, made headlines when she called plans to revive the series “a mistake.”
“I think it’s a mistake to call it Murder, She Wrote, because Murder, She Wrote will always be about a Cabot Cove and this wonderful little group of people who told those lovely stories and enjoyed a piece of that place, and also enjoyed Jessica Fletcher, who is a rare and very individual kind of person.”
NBC execs decided not to proceed with the pilot, but haven’t thrown in the towel altogether. Network suits are reportedly thinking of ways to approach Murder, She Wrote “in a different way, possibly with a new concept.”
The Peacock hasn’t exactly had rousing success remaking old-school hits. Reboots of The Munsters, Nightrider, The Bionic Woman and most recently Ironside were all unceremoniously axed from NBC’s primetime network in recent years.