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'In Living Color' Reboot Officially, Totally Dead At Fox. What About The Footage Already Shot?

Television
by Tambay A. Obenson
January 7, 2013 8:25 PM
1 Comment
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At least that's what NY Mag's Vulture says they've learned this evening, with their sources telling them that the reboot "will never see the light of day - at least on Fox." 

So does that mean another network might pick it up? Who knows! Although, quite frankly, I don't really give a damn at this point. 

Here's how we got here... a little history.

Those of you who weren't too keen on a reboot of In Living Color with an all-new cast of players (although still shepherded by Keenen Ivory Wayans), were thrilled when it was announced that the reboot had been put on hold, temporarily; specifically, Kevin Reilly, Entertainment President of the Fox Broadcasting Companyindicated in an August interview, that the planned In Living Color specials, reviving the sketch-comedy series, wouldn't air anytime soon. Though several had been shot, he said a "high bar" had been set, which essentially wasn't met in terms of writing and other contributing factors.

What I interpreted from that, is that expectations were high (given the success of the original In Living Color), and, although they'd shot a few episodes already, they apparently weren't meeting those high expectations; and so maybe it was back to the drawing board.

In an interview that followed soon after Reilly's statement over the summer, Milton "Lil' Rel" Howery, who was one of the planned series reboot's new cast members, recounted the day he learned that the reboot had stalled; stating, in short, that he arrived on set, noticed a tension in the air amongst all those who were present, inquired about what was at the root of that tension, and was told that Damon Wayans didn't want to do the show anymore (no reasons given), and that he approached David Alan Grier, asking him what was up with Damon, and Grier simply just shrugged and walked away. And so because Damon didn't want to do the show anymore, everyone else (including Jim Carrey, whom he says was supposed to return as well), decided not to do the show either.

Howery didn't go into details explaining why Damon suddenly walked away from it. Obviously, something went down, but, in all the interviews I've seen Keenen Ivory Wayans give in the last several months, he never really talks in-depth about why the show was shelved. Understandably I suppose, especially if Damon was somehow at the root of it.

Unless Lil Rel wasn't telling the whole truth.

But we were left to assume that there was likely a lot more to this than we know, and maybe it'll all come out eventually... or maybe it won't.

One thing that I was most surprised by was Rel's claim that just about everyone from the original series was going to return to the reboot. Unless they were returning for specials only, and not as part of the regular series cast, I'm not sure I quite understand why they would.

But Howery felt like they had something worth airing, based on what was shot last year, but something obviously happened that we aren't getting the full story on.

No matter, it looks like it's dead and buried for good, so no more speculation as to whether it's just in limbo, or has been put to rest permanently.

However, as I noted, maybe some other network will see something of value in it and pick it up; but I doubt it, and I actually hope not. Just leave it alone, move on, and create something entirely new.

I do hope that, at least, the hour's worth of footage that was shot early last year, will be released - maybe online - so we can all see what exactly this new incarnation would've looked like.

Or maybe a year from now, we'll all be asking what happened to that In Living Color reboot, and Keenen will talk openly about what transpired behind closed doors, and the whole truth will be known... or not.

The reboot was supposed to feature an all new cast (at least that's what was announced publicly) including Kali Hawk, Jennifer Bartels, Jermaine FowlerAyana Hampton, Cyrah Hawkins and of course Rel.

There was also going to be a new set of Fly Girls: Whitney Wiley, Tera Perez, Christina Chandler, Katee Shean, and Lisa Rosenthal.

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1 Comment

  • pk | January 8, 2013 11:11 AMReply

    That's fine. Leave the legacy of the show alone.

    Damon Wayans has gotten really distant from the family it seems. At least professionally. Didn't he also skip out on the "In Living Color" tvland reunion. He was absent from the Fox 25th year Anniversary special last year as well.

    He created his own sketch show on Showtime or Starz a few years ago and it was pretty bad. None of his brothers were apart of it.

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