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Les revenants - A sort of remake by ABC and an actual remake by Paul Abbott in the works


Paul Abbott (the creator of Shameless, State of Play, Touching Evil and Hit & Miss) will produce an English-language version of Les revenants. The working title for this upcoming TV series is They Came Back, which is the title given by the British distributor to the eponymous 2004 French film the show is based on. Les revenants' title on the international market is Rebound, though.

The premise of Les revenants is the following :

In an alpine town dominated by a huge dam, several people from different ages and backgrounds, all disoriented, try to get home. They don't know yet that they have been dead for several years, that they haven't aged and that no one is expecting them. Determined to regain a place that is no longer theirs, they come to discover that they're not the only revenants and that their return has set in motion increasing disturbances. What if this was only the inception of an even greater upheaval ?

Les revenants joins the list of remakes of Canal+ original series in development :

- Engrenages (4 seasons, 40 eps) : remake penned by Meredith Stiehm (Homeland) with Sam Mendes' company.
- Pigalle, la nuit (1 season, 8 episodes) : remake penned by James Manos Jr. (Dexter).
- Braquo (2 seasons, 16 episodes) : remake penned by Stephen Kronish (24).
- Maison Close (2 seasons, 16 eps) : remake from Elizabeth Sarnoff (Lost) with Wahlberg's company for HBO.
- Hard (2 seasons, 18 episodes) : Italian and Spanish versions of this comedy are in development.


And Les revenants will have the honour of being remade twice !

Well, not exactly, but a few days ago ABC has ordered a pilot for The Returned, a serialized drama series. Here's the official synopsis from ABC, compare it with Les revenants' above :

The Returned explores what happens when the people you have mourned and buried suddenly appear on your doorstep as if not a day’s gone by? The lives of the people of Aurora are forever changed when their deceased loved ones return.

On December 12, Deadline indicated that The Returned was "a late buy" for ABC - that was two weeks after Les revenants d├ębuted to widespread acclaim. This is based on Jason Mott's novel, a novel that will not be released until August 2013 but there has been a bidding war over its rights, and Brad Pitt's Plan B got it in the end. "The returned" literally means "Les revenants".

So I for one am wondering if Mott didn't pick a few ideas from the 2004 film or the 2012 series for his novel (which will be published in 8 months), or if ABC had not heard Les revenants when they ordered that pilot at the last minute. Still, I for one am eager to see what it looks like... or not, because I can't imagine a show like that on ABC : do you think it can make it on the screen on a broadcast network ?

But as good as they may be, I doubt Abbott's or ABC's series could top the original, that I strongly encourage you to watch (and SVTPlay will have the whole season streaming with Swedish subtitles on its website until March 9).

Source #1 and source #2.

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