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NBC won’t be going back to the 1970s after all.
The network has scrapped plans for The 1970s, a miniseries produced by Adam Levine and his 222 Productions banner and Sony Pictures Television, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
The 1970s was poised to explore the decade through the eyes of the music executives and artists who helped create some of the most influential music of the era.
Sources tell THR that Hayden Christensen and Kelsey Grammer were engaged to play the leads. Producers, insiders say, went back to NBC to see if the casting would get the network to go straight- to-series on the project, instead of the planned pilot presentation. Insiders say NBC toyed with the numbers but ultimately decided it didn’t want to take the gamble and pulled the plug completely. Producers are said to be coming up with new ideas for a different music project.
The potential series hailed from Boardwalk Entertainment Group and was eyed as a 10-hour event series that was to feature contemporary stars re-recording classic ‘70s hits.
“What not everyone realizes about the ’70s is just how much the culture was informed by the corporate world’s drive to control, package and profit from it,” Boardwalk co-founder Tim Bogart told THR in August 2014 when the project was first announced. Added Boardwalk co-founder Gary Randall: “It was the beginning of the end of the independent labels and the driving force of radio transitioning into the corporate takeover of the business and the demise of the mob influence.”
Sources say SPT will shop The 1970s to other networks.
Levine, who’s already in business with NBC with The Voice was brought aboard by NBC Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt. He was involved in all aspects of The 1970s, from song selection to decisions about which contemporary artists to cast to play the iconic musicians and re-record their classic songs.
For NBC, The 1970s is the latest project to be preemptively canceled before it took flight. It joins recent Coach reboot — which was axed after the pilot — and limited series Emerald City, which lived to see another day with a different showrunner.
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