Fans may have to wait a little longer for the premiere of the series that will give “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” a darker tone, as the show’s production seems to be getting off to a rocky start.
“Bel-Air,” which will reimagine the hit ’90s sitcom as a drama, has moved on to its third pair of showrunners since being greenlit in 2020, after parting ways with original showrunner Chris Collins (“The Wire”) and now his replacement Dianne Houston (“Empire”), multiple outlets confirmed this week. Collins’ departure was chalked up to creative differences, while no reason for Houston’s has been given at the time of this writing.
Writing pair T.J. Brady and Rasheed Newson, who were originally hired under Houston, have taken over as the latest co-showrunners in what will be their first time stepping up to the role. Newton and Brady’s previous credits include writing for the Showtime hit series “The Chi,” FX’s “Lie to Me,” and CW teen drama “The 100.”
The series, which was developed following Morgan Cooper’s viral 2019 fan trailer, will reportedly “explore the challenges of a Black man living in today’s society and examine what it’s like for someone leaving West Philadelphia for Bel-Air, one of Los Angeles’ richest neighborhoods.”
Former “Fresh Prince” star Alfonso Ribeiro previously commented on the darker update, saying that “it’s not even based on the show” and that he currently has “nothing to do with it.”
“It’s not even based on the show. It’s based on the theme song,” Ribeiro said. “It’s a completely different thing. It’s drama. It’s not comedy. I have nothing to do with it, so I don’t really know anything more. … But I actually appreciate it even more than a reboot. Let’s take a concept and turn it into a different show.”
A premiere date hasn’t been set for “Bel-Air” yet, but the series will debut on Peacock and has already been given a two-season order.