'Friday Night Lights' Movie Taps New Director

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John Erick Dowdle (left) and Drew Dowdle

John Erick Dowdle will replace David Gordon Green on the remake.

Universal has tapped John Erick Dowdle to direct the Friday Night Lights remake, replacing David Gordon Green, who had to exit the project due to conflicts with his work on the Halloween franchise.

Dowdle will polish up the script with his brother Drew, who will serve as an executive producer. The latest version of the script was written by Green and Josh Parkinson, with an earlier draft by Robert Schenkkan (Hacksaw Ridge). 

Based on the 1990 book by H.G. Bissinger, Universal originally adapted Friday Night Lights into a 2004 feature film that starred Billy Bob Thornton and chronicled the economically depressed town of Odessa, Texas, and its high school football team. A Connie Britton and Kyle Chandler-led TV drama followed and aired from 2006-2011.

Brian Grazer will produce the new pic for Imagine Entertainment, with Joshua Bearman and Joshua Davis set to executive produce. Sara Scott and Lexi Barta will oversee production for Universal. Karen Lunder will oversee for Imagine.

The Dowdle brothers already have some Friday Night Lights in their DNA. The duo were showrunners on the Paramount Network limited series Waco, which saw former Friday Night Lights star Taylor Kitsch play Branch Davidian leader David Koresh. They are repped by CAA, Novo and Weintraub Tobin.