When a truly iconic character emerges in pop culture, the temptation is often there to explore that character’s origins. Take, for instance, The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, the upcoming Han Solo anthology movie, or various other takes on characters that may or may not have been played by Harrison Ford. So far, however, one icon’s past has been left unexplored: MacGyver.
Played by Richard Dean Anderson, Angus MacGyver was a man who could get himself out of any scrape by improvising makeshift tools comprised largely of found objects in his general vicinity. He loomed large enough in the pop-culture landscape to inspire the parody film MacGruber and to be the object of Patty and Selma’s affection on The Simpsons. Now he’s finally making his return for a prequel series, but until just recently it has been unknown who would be filling Anderson’s shoes.
According to Deadline, the young MacGyver will be played by Lucas Till, better known to some as Havoc in the X-Men films, starting with X-Men: First Class. Till will be the resourceful special agent in his early days, just as he was being recruited by the U.S. Department of External Services (or DXS for short). Till will be joined by Fan Girl‘s Joshua Boone, who will play MacGyver’s high school buddy Gunner, and CSI‘s George Eads, who will play eccentric government employee Lincoln.
The series is being executive produced by Furious 7 director James Wan and the pilot is co-written by Paul Downs Colaizzo and Brett Mahoney, and will be directed by David Von Ancken. Whereas the original series started in media res with MacGyver already on a mission, the reboot starts at the beginning with his earlier years. This allows the producers to still keep the events of the original series as canon, thus avoiding the ire of its no doubt intense fan base. In addition to the series, a feature film is also in development that may or may not stay within the same continuity.
It would not be surprising to see the prequel series and the feature film be entirely separate, sort of like the CW’s younger-skewing DC universe and that of the movies. That way, once a new generation of Patties and Selmas are hooked on the younger MacGyver, they can join their parents for a slightly more mature cinematic outing. Either way, Angus MacGyver is poised to once again enter the public consciousness, and the sky’s the limit for what sort of ingenious things he does with the normally mundane objects around him.
No start date has been announced on the MacGyver pilot. Screen Rant will keep you updated with any developments.