Last month, a report surfaced that NBC and NBCUniversal are developing a TV reboot of the beloved fantasy series Xena: Warrior Princess, which ran for six seasons in syndication from 1995 to 2001. NBC Entertainment Chairman Bob Greenblatt confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter that the TV reboot is in active development, and they are currently searching for a writer to tackle the material. Here's what the network executive had to say about the potential project, confirming that the show's original producers, Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert, are back for the reboot..
"Yes, we're in the early stages of developing a new take on Xena and we're looking for a writer. We want to do it. I don't think it's just a continuation, but we haven't gotten that far. I think it's a great character, and we should try to figure out how to revive it somehow. There is a deal with Sam and Rob Tapert to produce, and it's with NBC International."
The initial report revealed that the TV reboot, which is being eyed for a 2016 debut, will feature an actress who could combine the charisma and charm of original series star Lucy Lawless, with the smarts of Katniss from The Hunger Games franchise. NBC hopes to turn this into an ongoing series, but it isn't known if the network is eyeing it as a 13-episode limited series run, or if it would get a full 22-episode season. The earlier report also claimed that the network wants to bring original star Lucy Lawless back in some capacity, which Bob Greenblatt also confirmed.
"We'd love to have Lucy be a part of it - if we felt that her presence didn't overshadow the direction we take with it. I'm not sure how she could be part of it if she wasn't playing Xena, and I don't know if that's a direction we'll ever go."
Lucy Lawless' title character was originally introduced on another first-run syndicated show, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, before she got her own spinoff. Renée O'Connor also starred as Xena's companion Gabrielle, with Ted Raimi as Joxer, Bruce Campbell as Autolycus, Marton Csokas as Borias and a young Karl Urban in one of his early roles as Julius Caesar. It remains to be seen if any of the supporting cast members will be asked back for the reboot.
Lucy Lawless, who is married to producer Rob Tapert, recently tweeted that the report "was just a rumor," but Bob Greenblatt said he'd be open to the actress being involved behind-the-scenes in some way. Is there an actress you think could inhabit this new version of Xena: Warrior Princess? Let us know what you think, and stay tuned for more updates on this Xena: Warrior Princess reboot. In the meantime, Lucy Lawless shared her reaction to hearing the news that Xena: Warrior Princess is officially happening.
If a #Xena reboot gets made, it's because the fans are beautiful, hardcore nutballs who want what they want.— Lucy Lawless (@RealLucyLawless) August 13, 2015