22 Years Later, A Major Sci-Fi Reboot Confirms an Exciting Trend for 2024

Everything old is new again.

20th Century Fox Television

It’s been a rough few years for television, but in the wake of the streaming age’s struggles, TV is finding its footing once more. Ironically, the key to its salvation may lie in the prevalent Hollywood trend of sequels, reboots, and spin-offs.

A recent round-up by Bloomberg confirmed that Disney is working on a reboot of The X-Files. The series will be helmed by Black Panther and Creed filmmaker Ryan Coogler, echoing statements from original series creator Chris Carter earlier in 2023. Per Carter, Coogler’s take on The X-Files will feature “a diverse cast,” but that’s all we know about the revival so far.

Disney isn’t the only company mining its intellectual property, as Netflix is working on a handful of spin-offs of its most popular shows. Its Addams Family spin-off, Wednesday, has secured a second season, and a series following Fred Armisen’s Uncle Fester is reportedly in the works as well. The streamer is also developing a series spun off from the Extraction franchise, along with two spin-offs set in the world of Peaky Blinders.

Dune: Prophecy is among HBO’s many planned spin-offs.

Warner Bros. Pictures

HBO, meanwhile, has been developing myriad spin-offs set in the Game of Thrones universe. According to Bloomberg, those are still in the works, along with Dune: Prophecy (formerly titled The Sisterhood), a prequel to the It films called Welcome to Derry, and multiple DC Universe shows.

Nostalgia has long been an effective tool for film, and it’s become a key to success on the small screen too. That this trend is circling back into the mainstream speaks to the unique issues facing the industry: tighter budgets and content oversaturation have forced studios to check whatever ambition they once had for original projects. “Known hits are safer bets in a world where consumers have endless choices,” Bloomberg reports. “You don’t need to spend as much money marketing when people are already familiar with a title.”

Existing franchises have been dominating for what feels like a lifetime, and television provides a unique opportunity to flesh out worlds in ways that films cannot. It’s always nice to see new material, but at least some of these titles could present genuinely exciting new horizons for existing properties, especially if they add diversity to old classics. Let’s hope Coogler’s X-Files reboot can kickstart a genuine revival — for better or worse, it could set the tone for this renewed interest in older, established franchises.

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