Terrible American Remakes Of Hit British TV Shows You Didn’t Know Existed

One of the longest-running sci-fi television series ever — right up there with “Doctor Who” — and a favorite cult comedy, “Red Dwarf” began with its first episode in 1988. It has had 12 series spanning nearly 35 years, with several lengthy hiatuses and a feature-length telefilm, “The Promised Land,” airing in 2020. But just a few short years after its initial broadcast, despite having been widely seen in the U.S. on PBS, there was interest in exporting the series to American shores with a local remake.

The new series was to be co-produced by original series creators Doug Naylor and Rob Grant, in collaboration with an American studio, producers, and writers. It would star an all-new cast except Robert Llewellyn, who would retain his role as the robot Kryten. British actress Jane Leeves, better known to audiences now as Daphne on “Frasier,” would also play the ship’s artificially intelligent computer. Unfortunately, the pilot was deemed a complete disaster, so much so that actor Craig Bierko, who played Dave Lister in the U.K. version, said that America took their show and “crapped on it.”

But the studio didn’t give up. In fact, they tried again almost immediately, recasting two roles, including future “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” star Terry Farrell as the gender-swapped Cat. This version was little better, and neither has ever been officially broadcast anywhere in the universe.



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