Fox Acquires ‘Les Misérables’ Modern Day Primetime Soap Adaptation from Rob Thomas

Published 1 year ago by , Updated August 29th, 2013 at 8:00 pm,

Russell Crowe in Les Miserables 2012 Fox Acquires Les Misérables Modern Day Primetime Soap Adaptation from Rob Thomas

In one of the biggest Kickstarter success stories so far, Veronica Mars showrunner Rob Thomas and star Kristen Bell rallied the troops of their fanbase in a campaign to raise a few million dollars that would be used to make a follow-up movie. The Kickstarter campaign generated just over $5.7 million and the film is now set for release in 2014.

The trailer for Thomas’ crowd-funded Veronica Mars movie debuted at Comic-Con earlier this summer, and now the writer and producer is all set to move on to his next big TV project. As those who’ve watched the new Veronica Mars clips will know, the film picks up with Bell’s character working as a “bigshot New York lawyer,” and Thomas’ interest in the subject matter has apparently inspired him to explore similar ground.

Deadline reports that Thomas has teamed up with writer Graham Norris to create a show about a modern-day legal practice, which will be based on Victor Hugo’s beautiful yet tragic novel about (one of) the French revolution(s), Les Misérables. The show has been picked up by Fox with script commitment plus penalty, meaning that we should at the very least get to see the pilot episode.

Les Misérables has been adapted countless times on the stage, on television and on film, so it can’t hurt to try an alternative interpretation of the source material. The most recent version was Tom Hooper’s recent big-screen delivery of the musical by Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg, which received average reviews but performed impressively at the box office. It’s probably not a stretch to say that Fox’s decision was partially spurred by this demonstration of the story’s sustained popularity.

Rob Thomas on the set of the Vernica Mars movie Fox Acquires Les Misérables Modern Day Primetime Soap Adaptation from Rob Thomas

Show creator Rob Thomas

It’s safe to say, however, that Thomas’ new drama probably won’t feature a lot of singing or dancing. The Jean Valjean analog is a genius lawyer who spends his days helping the innocent by running a legal exoneration program, whilst at the same time trying to escape the consequences of an unjust conviction in his own past. The role of Javert is filled by a fierce U.S. attorney obsessed with resurrecting “the ghosts of the past.”

For fans of Thomas’ writing, this new project is definitely worth keeping an eye on, if only to see how well the characters and themes of Les Misérables translate into a modern setting. Perhaps Bell, who guest-starred on Thomas’ show Party Down before her lead role in Veronica Mars, might even put in an appearance as one of the main female characters. Tell us if you’re intrigued by the idea, or if you think Thomas’ pitch is a recipe for disaster, in the comments.


Source: Deadline

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TAGS: les miserables


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  1. This is the worst idea since casting Ben Affleck as Batman.

    • So really, it’s a brilliant idea?

      It’d probably be better than cramming the whole story into a 2+ hour movie.

      • Better ideas would have been:

        1) Not to make it at all.

        2) If compelled to make it, hire a god producer, not flop-meister Rob Thomas.

  2. It could work. Considering that since this is more an adapatation of the book and not the musical. The book had character, themes, and whole story arks not in the musical version. While i enjoyed the musical, it only condensed a fraction of what’s actually in that extensive book.

    This could work. Even if it’s just in theory. I like the idea of a lawyer helping the poor while himself is hiding from a vengeful DA. If i watched legal dramas, i would definitely watch this. I’ll probably give it a try anyway.

    Rememeber, Les Miserables is an epic story written over a century ago, not a 3 hour musical with Wolverine and the Gladiator

    • It won’t work. We’re talking Rob Thomas, the man who never created a good show (and never came close to having a hit in his entire sad, sad career).

  3. How pathetic.

    Rob Thomas is a horrible writer-producer who keeps making flops, lied about his fake Kickstarter campaign (which had all the money in place BEFORE he started it) and now is given yet one more project to kill dead with his patented crappy writing.

    Why is Hollywood going to losers like him again and again I will never understand, but it is quite sickening to see such complete and utter lack of talent and ethics be rewarded.

  4. Les Mis has been done, and done, and done, and done… @#$%!

  5. How do you pronounce the name? Hopefully not a Glee spinoff. . .

  6. For fans of Thomas’ writing, this new project is definitely worth keeping an eye on, if only to see how well the characters and themes of Les Misérables translate into a modern setting.

    Let’s see, Fantine, nowadays having a child out of wedlock is no big deal, there’s paternity tests and child support, plus financial aid programs.

    The Thernadiers, there’s the better buisness bureau, health inspectors, child services.

    • The only question is how crappy it’s going to be. After all, we already know it will be a badly written flop since it’s Rob Thomas.

  7. Isn’t the setting of Les Mis quite crucial to its themes and so on?

    This might just be worth watching in a car-crash kinda way.