French supernatural series The Returned (Les Revenants) is getting US makeover.
A&E Studios and FremantleMedia North America have scooped the rights to remake the hit series, Deadline reports, with former LOST and current Bates Motel co-showrunner Carlton Cuse rumored to oversee the venture.
Created by Fabrice Gobert, Les Revenants was inspired by the 2004 feature film by the same name directed by Robin Campillo (English-language title They Came Back). It centers on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, having not aged and unaware of their own fatality. As they attempt to resume their lives, strange phenomena and gruesome murders begin to occur.
A&E’s EVP and general manager David McKillop, said:
“The Returned takes an incredibly unique approach, filled with suspense and twists and turns, to the subject of the living dead.”
Added FMNA CEO Thom Beers:
“Having seen Fabrice Gobert’s original version and the success the series has had in France, we’re thrilled to be partnering with the team at A+E to bring this enigmatic thriller to U.S. audiences.”
A remake seems a bit unnecessary, as the original – the first season of which was recently acquired by Sundance Channel for the US – is good enough (though some might point to the fear of subtitles as a barrier). Nonetheless, it’s interesting that Cuse is linked with the project, because, as we’ve said before, The Returned is arguably one of the most LOST-like serials since LOST – certainly in terms of mystery and mystique (though LOST had more genre-strings to its eclectic bow, even in Season 1).
Still, since a remake is happening, it will be interesting to see what A&E/Freemantle bring to the concept. Will it be a watered-down rehash, or can they equal or improve upon the original? An original that also bears parallels with ABC’s upcoming Resurrection.
The Returned Season 2 is slated to air in France and the UK in 2014. Looks like we’ll be keeping a seriable eye on both versions.