On the big screen, it's back to the 1970s. Studios move forward on remakes of ''Dukes of Hazzard,'' ''Bad News Bears,'' and ''Hawaii Five-O''

By Gary Susman
Updated September 09, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT
Credit: Johnny Knoxville: Luis Martinez/AP
  • Movie

Grow your sideburns and step into your bellbottoms. It’s the 1970s all over again at the multiplex, with several Me Decade titles on their way as big-screen remakes. First out of the gate may be ”The Dukes of Hazzard.” Warner Bros. has been trying to get this one off the ground for ages, but now, People reports, the studio has finally found a pair of good ol’ boys to ride in the General Lee. That’ll be Johnny Knoxville and Seann William Scott as Luke and Bo Duke, the roles created on the CBS series by Tom Wopat and John Schneider. The studio still hasn’t found someone to fill Daisy Duke’s Daisy Dukes, but Jessica Simpson remains the frontrunner for the short-shorts-wearing cousin played on TV by Catherine Bach. As for Boss Hogg, the villain played on the 1979-85 show by Sorrell Booke, People reports that Warner Bros. is leaning toward another actor known in the ’70s for his fondness for fast cars, Burt Reynolds.

Over at Paramount, they’re readying a remake of ”The Bad News Bears.” Back in April, the studio cast ”Bad Santa”’s alcohol-swigging, kid-loathing Billy Bob Thornton in the Walter Matthau role of the beer-chugging, cantankerous Little League coach and hired ”Bad Santa” scribes Glenn Ficarra and John Requa to update the 1976 screenplay. Now, according to trade reports, the studio has hired a director who knows how to make a film about a slobby adult who whips a group of misfit kids into shape: ”School of Rock”’s Richard Linklater. The movie will shoot in November with an eye toward a 2005 release.

Warner Bros. is also adapting another CBS show from the ’70s, ”Hawaii Five-O.” Variety reports that the studio has commissioned ”Ocean’s Twelve” screenwriter George Nolfi to adapt the classic 1968-80 cop drama. The studio is hoping for a summer 2006 release, but it has yet to cast the Jack Lord role of Det. Steve McGarrett, so maybe it’s a little early for Warners to tell theater owners to book ’em, Dan-o.

Bad News Bears

  • Movie
  • PG-13
  • 111 minutes
  • Richard Linklater