One of these days, there will be an order for a reboot or retooling or adaptation for TV that will finally push us over the edge and make us yearn for the age of original programming. Thanks to news just released from CBS, however, this is not that day. The Training Day film-to-television adaptation that has been in the works for months now has finally made some progress and has been officially ordered to pilot.
Training Day will be a drama series that reimagines the 2001 feature film of the same name about a rogue narcotics detective (Denzel Washington) and his rookie cop partner (Ethan Hawke). Washington won an Academy Award for his work, and Hawke received a nomination, so here's hoping the small screen version will be as accolade-friendly.
The pilot will take place fifteen years after the end of the film, and it provides a twist on the dynamics of the original partners, according to Deadline. The rookie cop will be an idealistic young African-American police officer who is appointed to an elite squad of the LAPD, partnered with a seasoned and morally ambiguous Caucasian detective.
The potential CBS series clearly won’t be a remake of the film, which is frankly great for the folks working to bring it to the small screen. Training Day was a pretty fantastic movie, and inviting too many comparisons could sabotage the pilot right out of the gate.
Fans of the film who might have doubts about whether a series could be handled well enough to be a worthy follow-up should be pleased by the brains behind the scenes of Training Day. Original film director Antoine Fuqua is executive producing the project and is set to direct the pilot. In fact, it was Fuqua’s idea to return to the world of Training Day for a TV series. He recruited a writer who frankly could not be more perfect for the job to write the pilot. Will Beall is a former LAPD detective who has written for the big screen with Gangster Squad and the small screen on Castle. Beall will co-executive produce with Fuqua.
Training Day has only been ordered to pilot at this point, so there’s no word just yet on casting. Denzel Washington’s character died at the end of the film, so we can’t expect him to make a cameo even if CBS could afford him, and Ethan Hawke has kept busy enough that we probably shouldn’t expect a guest spot, but there’s plenty of other acting talent that CBS could surely mine for this project.
At this point, we should really only hope that the pilot goes well enough for a series order from CBS. The idea of Antoine Fuqua bringing us back to the world of Training Day on a weekly basis is so appealing that it’s hard to imagine how awful the pilot would have to be for CBS to pass. For a look at other great shows to watch while we wait on future updates, check out the list of midseason TV premiere dates.