American networks love to remake foreign shows, especially the British ones. Amazon is the latest one to give it a try, and has ordered a remake of the much-loved British comedy Friday Night Dinner for its Freevee streaming service.
According to Deadline (opens in new tab), Freevee has commissioned the remake with a 10-episode straight-to-series order. The new show will be renamed “Dinner with the Parents,” with Late Show with David Letterman veteran Jon Beckerman handling writing duties.
The original Friday Night Dinner features the Goodmans, a Jewish family from North London, and all the antics they get up to during their family dinners each Friday night. It aired on Channel 4 between 2011 and 2020, clocking in with six seasons and 37 episodes; quite a lot for a British TV series.
The show starred Tamsin Greig as matriarch Jackie, Paul Ritter as her eccentric husband Martin, alongside Simon Bird and Tom Rosenthal as her mischievous (and fully-grown adult) sons Adam and Johnny. Mark Heap also stars as their neighbour Jim, one of the weirdest characters to grace British television, who has an obsession with joining the family for dinner.
Funnily enough, this is the fourth time an American network has attempted to remake Friday Night Dinner. The first came in 2011, with The Office’s Greg Daniels recruiting Alison Janney (The West Wing) and Tony Shalhoub (Monk) to star in a remake for NBC. But this version failed to get past the pilot stage.
CBS attempted to make the show twice. The first time in 2014, and then again in 2016 with the new title “Sunday Night Dinner.” Neither version made it to series, and now Freevee is taking a turn.
Of course, remaking foreign shows is hard. For every show like The Office or House of Cards you end up with dozens of shows like The Inbetweeners and Red Dwarf USA. Here’s just hoping that the team behind Dinner With The Parents have what it takes to make the show a success. Or, at the very least, not terrible. Do Americans even have ‘crimble crumble’ for dessert?
There’s no news on casting, or when Dinner With The Parents might arrive, but it’s not the only show coming to Amazon’s free-to-watch streaming services. A remake of Inside No. 9, based on the British black comedy anthology series, is also coming to Freevee alongside American Rust — a revival of the canceled Showtime series.