To watch or not to watch? That will be the question facing American fans of Broadchurch, when the popular British series gets remade and thoroughly Yankified on Fox. (The original version of the show just concluded its first season run on BBC America last week.)
Those who do tune in to the Broadchurch reboot during the 2014-15 season will have a sense of déjà vu all over again now that Fox has announced that actor David Tennant will reprise his role as the lead police detective investigating the murder of a young boy.
The Doctor Who star headed the impressive ensemble cast of the British version, portraying Detective Inspector Alec Hardy, a new arrival to Broadchurch, the fictional seaside village in Dorset where the killing took place.
The Fox redo will be set in an American small town. The network hasn’t said whether Tennant will play a Scotsman (which he is in real life) who has ended up on this side of the Atlantic or will adopt an American accent for the U.S. version of the series.
There is also no word yet on additional casting for the American show, which begins production in January.
We here at Anglophenia, however, have a helpful suggestion: Bring over Olivia Colman, who so memorably played Detective Sergeant Ellie Miller in the British version, for the equivalent role on the new show. Then surround her and Tennant with a crackerjack cast of American actors.
Our dream casting? Friday Night Lights’ Connie Britton and Kyle Chandler as Beth and Mark Latimer, the parents of the dead youth; Sally Field as busybody Susan Wright; Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston as news shop owner Jack Marshall; Scandal’s Kerry Washington as big city reporter Karen White; Shia LaBeouf as eager beaver local reporter Olly Stevens; Friends’ Lisa Kudrow as veteran newshound Maggie Radcliffe; Dexter’s Michael C. Hall as kindly Rev. Paul Coates; Mad Men’s Jon Hamm as Ellie’s husband Joe Miller; and The Big Bang Theory’s Johnny Galecki as plumber’s helper Nige Carter.
But back to reality. Chris Chibnall, who created and wrote the series in the U.K., will serve as executive producer of Fox’s version and will write the first episode. Married writing duo Dan Futterman (Capote) and Anya Epstein (In Treatment) will serve as executive producers and show runners.
Also of note: the fact that Tennant will be doing the American remake of Broadchurch makes it unlikely that he’ll appear in the second season of the British version, for which there have as yet been no casting announcements.
Who would you cast in the new American version of Broadchurch?