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NBC broke a lot of hearts when the decision was made not to immediately move forward with the TV continuation of the 1999 feature Cruel Intentions, but the network mysteriously left the door open for a potential future for the project. Thankfully, it looks like a less than cruel outcome may be on the horizon, as NBC has reportedly requested extensions for the cast options, meaning the actors and actresses might just be needed on set at some point soon.
Now, cast option extensions are obviously not a guarantee that Cruel Intentions will find its way to our primetime schedules at any point over the next year, but it's definitely a positive sign. Most projects that miss out on the series order bonanza quickly fade into unfinished IMDb pages, so NBC gets some props for making the back burner as comfortable as possible for the cast and crew of the show, including Sarah Michelle Gellar, who is still set to reprise her role of Kathryn Merteuil. And looking damned good doing it, too.
NBC is working with Sony TV on Cruel Intentions, and the studio is still definitely down with keeping the project at the network, despite growing interest from other outlets, according to Deadline. (I have to imagine that the Cinemax version of this drama would be a whole different beast.) Sony TV and NBC have been quite chummy in recent years, and the pair's latest efforts include the highly anticipated spinoff The Blacklist: Redemption and the time-travel drama Timeless.
The only reason Cruel Intentions didn't get picked up in May was because the network already had too many things on the schedule, from returning favorites to a couple of newbies to Thursday Night Football. There just wasn't enough room to fit a steamy and soapy adult sequel to a sultry drama aimed at oversexed teenagers, since hitting upon a specific demographic is kind of a crapshoot. Still, with Sarah Michelle Gellar involved, you know people are going to tune in.
For the update, Gellar's Kathryn is now betrothed to an affluent gentleman and in charge of a youth program at the private school Valmont Internation, where she is vying for control over the school. Her life gets very complicated when Annette Hargrove (the Reese Witherspoon role now played by Kate Levering) returns to her life, along with her and Sebastian's son Bash, who discovers a hidden journal that lays out his father's lecherous legacy. And instead of being disgusted, Bash attempts to claim that sex-and-money-hungry lifestyle as his own, and you can bet that Kathryn will have something to say and do about it.
Cruel Intentions is one of the stranger remakes and revivals currently swirling around the TV-sphere, but it's definitely more interesting than some other misguided efforts out there. Here's hoping we'll hear good news about revisiting this sinful world before Gellar finds another project to take up her time.