Reboots and revivals are all the rage on TV nowadays, and networks large and small are taking on projects to make everything old new again. ABC has an especially ambitious revival in the works that could be unlike anything else on the small screen. The network is bringing the classic series Battle of the Network Stars to television once more, and sooner than many of us might have guessed.
Battle of the Network Stars will return to television this summer on ABC. The network has already begun a casting search for competitors, according to Variety, and the series will reportedly begin shooting in May. Although no competitors have yet been announced, they will hail from across a wide variety of TV genres and compete against one another to raise money for charities.
The series made its original debut way back in 1976 on ABC, and it pitted stars from the three major networks against each other in sporting events including golf, kayaking, tug of war, and football. It ran for 18 episodes of two hours each from 1976 to 1985. Battle of the Network Stars was revived briefly for one episode in 1988, still on ABC. The second revival didn't happen until 2003, when NBC gave it a shot. The NBC version only featured stars of NBC series against one another rather than incorporating big names from ABC and CBS as well. Summer 2017 will be the first time that a new episode of Battle of the Network Stars has aired on ABC in almost 30 years.
The original run of the show involved some of the biggest names in TV at the time, all giving everything they had to battle their fellow actors and win the top prizes. Wonder Woman herself even once competed! Take a look at Wonder Woman TV star Lynda Carter in action on Battle of the Network Stars, circa 1976:
ABC has done well with classic game show revivals. New versions of Match Game, Celebrity Family Feud, and The $100,000 Pyramid made for a block of primetime game shows that was a huge hit for the network in summer 2016; if Battle of the Network Stars is successful, it may lead to another hit of a summer for ABC. Battle of the Network Stars is only one of many reboots coming to the small screen in the foreseeable future. Take a look at our list of 17 remakes and revivals that are coming to TV, and don't forget to check out our midseason TV premiere schedule to find what you can catch on primetime in the coming weeks. If streaming is more your style, see our 2017 Netflix premiere schedule for all your Netflix streaming options.
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Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).