10:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
'90210' Revival With Six Original Stars Lands at Fox for Summer Debut
Fox is revisiting its favorite ZIP code — only this time, the neighborhood has changed a little.
The network has handed out a straight-to-series order for 90210, a reboot with a twist of its former teen soap Beverly Hills, 90210. Original stars Jason Priestley (Brandon), Jennie Garth (Kelly), Ian Ziering (Steve), Gabrielle Carteris (Andrea), Brian Austin Green (David) and Tori Spelling (Donna) will all return. The drama is being billed as a six-episode limited series that will air in the summer. All six of the actors — who will play heightened versions of themselves — announced the news Wednesday via social media posts with a link to a video promoting 90210's return (watch that, above).
The project, which has been in the works for nearly a year since Spelling and Garth began taking meetings for it, hails from writers and executive producers Chris Alberghini and Mike Chessler, who came up with the new take alongside Spelling and Garth. The writing duo previously worked on The CW's 90210 reboot (and took over MTV's Awkward). All six original stars will also be credited as exec producers. It's unclear if any other stars from the original — including Shannen Doherty (who was famously fired from the show) or Luke Perry (who is now a regular on The CW's Riverdale) — will be included in the series, which is a co-production between CBS TV Studios, who produced the original.
"Beverly Hills, 90210 left an indelible impact on pop culture and an entire generation," said Fox Entertainment president Michael Thorn. "Its powerful legacy is an important part of our network’s DNA — bold stories not told anywhere else and bigger-than-life-characters — and we’re honored to bring back the beloved original cast members for 90210."
Created by Darren Star and exec produced by Aaron Spelling, Beverly Hills, 90210 ran for 10 seasons and was the latter's longest-running show (edging out Dynasty). The series followed a group of friends from high school to college and beyond. It became a pop culture phenomenon and spawned a spinoff, Melrose Place. Both shows were rebooted at The CW, with the second incarnation of 90210 running for five seasons and wrapping in 2013 and Melrose Place clocking in at one season in 2009-10.
The new 90210 landed at Fox after new entertainment CEO Charlie Collier was said to have been the most passionate about landing the latest take, which was shopped to networks in December. Other networks and streamers were also circling the show. Collier name-checked 90210 earlier this month when he made his first public remarks about his direction for the soon-to-be independent broadcast network at the Television Critics Association's winter press tour. "[W]ith respect to all the IP in our history, if we could honor it, we take the legacy of Fox very seriously, from Melrose to 90210 to 24. All of these franchises, if we could do it right and with the support of great writing, we’d take a serious look at a lot of it," he said when asked about his love for Melrose Place after seeing a poster for the show during his first day on the Fox lot.
The new 90210 is described as irreverent and is inspired by the six original stars' real lives and relationships. Here's the official description: "Having gone their separate ways since the original series ended 19 years ago, Jason, Jennie, Ian, Gabrielle, Brian and Tori reunite when one of them suggests it’s time to get a Beverly Hills, 90210 reboot up and running. But getting it going may make for an even more delicious soap than the reboot itself. What will happen when first loves, old romances, friends and frenemies come back together, as this iconic cast — whom the whole world watched grow up together — attempts to continue from where they left off?"
90210 arrives as Fox is on the cusp of becoming untethered from its studio sibling and an indie broadcast network for the first time in decades. The network this season shifted to a new, broader direction that focuses on sports and broad-skewing family comedies and procedurals (like 911 and Tim Allen's Last Man Standing). This is the first new scripted drama to be ordered at the so-called New Fox under Collier. The network previously ordered a pair of animated comedies as it doubles down on the genre while also possibly preparing for a day when Family Guy and The Simpsons — both poised to become Disney-owned — could move off the network.