Baywatch returning to TV in HD, will test the waters for reboot
Deadline is reporting that FremantleMedia has been working on remastering all 242 episodes of popular TV series Baywatch into high definition and are looking to license the series to broadcasters around the globe. Along with the remastering of the show, FremantleMedia is also tinkering with the idea of rebooting the lifeguard show for modern audiences, should the syndication of the HD remasters be successful.
Despite the lukewarm reception of the 2017 film, COO of FremantleMedia, Bob McCourt, has said the film made people aware of the Baywatch brand again and due to that rejuvenation FremantleMedia decided to upgrade the 35mm film of the original series to HD. FremantleMedia has worked with Warner Bros. and Illuminate to restore Baywatch and McCourt has said about the outcome, “The results are phenomenal. When you have the sea and obviously it’s set on the beach, it was such a colorful series, so that color really comes out when you put it into HD.”
The company also partnered with original series composer Corey Lerios and replaced 300 songs with new ones, though they did keep the original theme song.
With the entire series remastered, FremantleMedia is now shopping the series to international and streaming outlets to find its audience again. Baywatch still doees well in Germany, France, and Italy. McCourt said of the show, “It still looks quite contemporary and the storylines stand up. It doesn’t actually look that old fashioned.”
Regarding the proposed reboot, McCourt said: “I think if this remastered version is sold extensively and a new audience comes to Baywatch, then it will give us a real indication as to whether a new series could be successful. We would definitely think seriously about making a new series and maybe we’ll get approached by some broadcasters about making one.”