During the mid-eighties, MacGyver was somewhat literally a household name for the ABC network. The cultural impact of the show was far reaching (it aired in over 70 countries), and even spawned the use of the word “MacGyvering” – which meant to find simple solutions out of everyday objects to solve complex problems. In fact, the show’s producers just missed out on having the word “MacGyverism” entered in the Webster’s Dictionary.The action/adventure show starring Richard Dean Anderson (Stargate: SG-1) eventually ended after seven seasons and two made-for-TV movies, but not before leaving an indelible mark on society. After a campaign to make a big screen version of MacGyver stalled in development (Lionsgate is currently working a new adaptation), CBS picked up the property and decided to reboot the once-popular television series. They then hired director James Wan (Insidious, Saw) to oversee its development.The new show stars Lucas Till (X-Men: First Class) in the titular role of Angus MacGyver, George Eads (CSI: Crime Scene Investigation) as former C.I.A. operative Jack Dalton, Sandrine Holt (House of Cards) as Patricia Thornton (gender-changed from the original series), Justin Hires (Rush Hour) as Mac’s best friend Wilt Bozer and Tristin Mays (The Vampire Diaries) as the computer hacker Riley Davis. Original show creator Lee David Zlotoff and Henry Winkler (Happy Days) return as producers for the reboot series.
That’s not to say the new series won’t be entertaining. CBS successfully rebooted Hawaii 5-0 a few years ago, so MacGyver could turn out to be just as successful. Unfortunately for long-time fans of the franchise, they won’t see Richard Dean Anderson return to the show, though CBS did try to get him to sign up. Anderson said this on his website in July:And all I can say is, I’m not considering being a part of a project that has overlooked the insanely LOYAL FANS of the original character and has proceeded without considering how and why they all became and STAYED loyal fans… Yes, I was asked, but no, I won’t be involved in the MacGyver reboot.Sadly, Dana Elcar, who played Peter Thornton in the original series died in 2005. However Bruce McGill, who originally played the opportunist/pilot known as Jack Dalton, or Michael Des Barres, who played Mac’s arch-nemesis Murdoc, could easily make a cameo or two in the new series, as both actors are still working.MacGyver premiers Friday September 23rd on CBS.