A tepid January TV spec market might get a jolt soon with an iconic title making its return. 20th Century Fox TV is expected to take out the contemporary revival of the Emmy-winning 1980s NBC legal drama L.A. Law, which was developed in-house.
Co-creator Steven Bochco revealed in August that he was developing a new L.A. Law with one of the series’ original writers, Billy Finkelstein.
“They found a way to take an iconic series and bring it to 2016 Los Angeles,” infusing some “beloved pieces” from the original show into a contemporary legal drama, Fox TV Group chairman Gary Newman told Deadline at TCA. “It is an interesting blend of old and new.”
I hear the new incarnation, written by Bochco and Finkelstein, revolves around new characters, young lawyers, and also is expected to feature several characters from the original series as bosses. Does the show have an Upstairs, Downstairs” dynamic? “That’s an interesting way to put it,” Newman said.
The project will not go automatically to Fox. “It will be taken to the other networks too,” said Newman, who, along with Dana Walden, oversees both Fox and 20th TV.
In an interview last summer on The Rich Eisen Show, Bochco recalled how Finkelstein had pitched him a L.A. Law revamp. Bochco said he wasn’t interested but that the writer reminded him that the kind of law that’s relevant in 2016 didn’t even exist in 1986. “And he’s right,” Bochco said. “So many interesting legal aspects of our society just simply weren’t in play then.”