With all the major networks and studios going wild with remakes and revivals, it’s easy to forget there are many smaller outlets in the digital realm that can also bring old favorites back to new viewers. The online video channel Machinima has announced it is actively developing a reboot of the 1980s action series Knight Rider, which will be the show’s second in the last decade. You’ve got to be KITT-ing me.
These are still the very early days for Knight Rider‘s return to the small screen, but Machinima’s execs are confident that the show will come together in time for a 2017 premiere date, though it’s still tentative at this point. Luckily, a handful of talented parties are already involved behind the scenes, as Star Trek Beyond director Justin Lin will be producing the new project alongside the Asian-American YouTube channel YOMYOMF (You Offend ME, You Offend My FAMILY) and NBCUniversal Brand Development. It isn’t clear how invested Lin will be as far as writing/directing goes, but Machinima CEO Chat Gustein praised the filmmaker’s storytelling abilities in the press release, so perhaps this new show will have a large presence in his already busy schedule.
As you probably know, Knight Rider was one of actor David Hasselhoff’s first big breaks in 1982. For four seasons, he played the crimefighting Michael Knight, who was paired with the one-of-a-kind (at the time) artificially intelligent Pontiac Trans Am named KITT (Knight Industries Two Thousand), voiced by William Daniels. The show delivered a lot of dangerous missions and situations for the duo to get out of and – spoiler alert – they always got out of them. Hasselhoff and KITT even reunited a couple of years ago for a badass commercial.
In 2007, NBC went into production on a two-hour TV movie reboot of Knight Rider with the express interest of spinning it into a TV series, which it did for the 2008 fall season, with actor Justin Bruening as the son of Michael Knight. Unfortunately, it didn’t retain any kind of popularity and was cancelled after one season over low ratings. There has also been a lot of talk about getting a movie version out, with Chris Pratt rumored for involvement, but it never panned out. So the pressure is on.
Machinima has been behind some supercool stuff over the years that goes far beyond its normal gaming-heavy content. It was where Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome debuted, for one, and the company has been behind some killer tie-in series such as Mortal Kombat: Legacy, Street Fighter: Assassin’s Fist, Transformers: Combiner Wars and more. It’ll be interesting to see how Knight Rider and its sci-fi leanings gets adapted for Machinima’s core audience.
We will be waiting until at least some point in 2017 for a new version of Knight Rider, but it will hopefully be worth it by the time it gets here. In Machinima, we trust.
By Nick Venable