Baywatch is coming back and this time, you'll get to see Pamela Anderson and David Hasselhoff in HD. FremantleMedia has remastered all 242 episodes of the popular 90s series from its original run in HD and updated it for modern audiences. The company is currently shopping the remastered version of the show to various broadcasters and streaming services to find it a home. Assuming this goes over well, a possible reboot of the lifeguard drama could be on the horizon.
The company hasn't just updated the fidelity of the series. Baywatch will now be presented in a modern 16:9 aspect ratio, as opposed to the original 4:3. They have also replaced 300 of the songs featured in the show with modern songs, with the help of composer Corey Larios. Original series producers Michael Berk, Greg Bonann and Doug Schwartz helped oversee the HD transfers from original 35mm prints, along with Warner Bros and Illuminate. FremantleMedia International COO Bob McCourt had this to say.
"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."
Bob McCourt added that "It still looks quite contemporary and the storylines stand up. It doesn't actually look that old fashioned." Baywatch has remained popular, specifically in Europe, where it continues to air in countries like Germany and France. So there is certainly a market for the show. This, despite the fact that last year's movie reboot, which starred Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron, was met with mixed reviews and made less than $60 million at the domestic box office. Still, McCourt thinks the movie didn't kill the chances of a series reboot happening in the future.
"I think we thought the film might have given us reason to reboot the TV series, but given the mixed reviews that didn't happen straight away. 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."
There's no word on where the HD version of Baywatch will ultimately wind up but FremantleMedia had to sort out a very complex rights situation in order to put this together. In all likelihood, any new iteration of Baywatch would be a reboot, mostly centering on new characters, as opposed to a revival, centering on characters previously featured in the show. That all hinges on how much interest exists in the remastered version of the series once it finds a home. But studios have been big on reviving once popular shows as of late and Baywatch seems right in that very wheelhouse. This news comes to us courtesy of Deadline.