Variety reports that HOUSE creator/showrunner David Shore has been tapped by NBC/Universal and Steve Carrell's production company to revive Stephen J. Cannell's THE ROCKFORD FILES. It's no surprise that they approached Shore for the coveted gig…he's a TV A-lister who tried to spin-off a Rockf0rd-esque character from HOUSE last season.

"It's one of the shows that made me want to become a writer," Shore said. "I had no interest in adapting any old stuff, but this was the one exception."

Shore's just starting to think about an approach to bring "The Rockford Files" into the present day, but he intends to stick with the basic foundation of a private eye in L.A. just trying to make a living.

"What makes 'Rockford' timeless is that he's vulnerable, he's flawed. He's used to hustling and getting hustled," Shore said. "Sometimes he's a hero and sometimes he runs away."

The hard part won't be getting the script right…it will be finding this generation's equivalent of  James Garner to the play the part. (Is George Clooney still a movie star?) 

10 thoughts on “ROCKFORD Revived”

  1. I wish Shore the best and all the luck in the world, but this is yet another property I have absolutely no interest or desire in seeing get ‘remade’. It is what it is what it was…a timeless classic, and should remain so.

  2. Hard for me to see anybody but James Garner play Rockford, just as much as it would be to see anybody but Tom Selleck play Magnum.
    Some actors have just made the characters so much their own I’m mildly surprised any producer would try to screw with it, especially considering the number of good PI novels that are out there to choose from.

  3. It’s too bad Nathan Fillion’s already got a job. He’s the closest I could come to the multi-faceted brilliance of James Garner, or even Robert Urich.

  4. I actually met with Carrell’s people about ROCKFORD a few months back and had a great meeting. They really are enthusiastic about the project and also well aware of the potential pitfalls (I’m not surprised they went with a far bigger name than me on the project, btw. I would have, too, in their shoes!). I won’t go into the take that I pitched on ROCKFORD, but I think it could be done without Garner. In some ways, I think ROCKFORD is as much about the tone and attitude as it was Garner’s iconic performance.

  5. I tried to think of who could take that role. Garner achieved so perfectly what they set out to do that you can’t out-Garner Garner, and what they set out to do was so designed for him that if you go elsewhere, it wouldn’t seem like Rockford. It could be an excellent show capturing some of the attitude, of course.
    The only casting thought I ended up having is that Garner, circa 1967, would’ve made a great Archie Goodwin in an adaptation of Nero Wolfe… and that’s an observation that serves no good end.

  6. I’m assuming that although it’s Steve Carrell’s company, Carrell isn’t eyeing the role for himself? No criticism of the actor, but it’s some way from the kind of casting that springs to mind.
    As for Clooney, I’d pay money to see a Clooney/Soderberg take on Travis McGee. Though it isn’t likely — I recently read that the rights have changed hands again and there’s to be another attempt at a McGee TV series.


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