Step aside, Mr. Belding, there’s a new principal in town: NBCUniversal’s forthcoming streaming service Peacock has cast “Pitch Perfect” alum John Michael Higgins (pictured below) as the new head of Bayside High in its upcoming “Saved by the Bell” reboot, an individual with knowledge of the casting tells TheWrap.
He’ll be playing Principal Toddman, the successor to Dennis Haskins’ Principal Richard Belding, who was the bane of Zack Morris’ (Mark-Paul Gosselaar) existence in the original “Saved By the Bell,” which ran from 1989 to 1993 on NBC, and its spinoffs.
According to the official description, the “beleaguered” Principal Toddman, “is constantly being pranked by his privileged students and yelled at by their entitled parents. But all this changes when Bayside gets an influx of new, low-income students and Toddman gets a second chance to really make a difference.”
The “Saved by the Bell” reboot was announced in September as part of Peacock’s, which will launch next April, extensive slate of original programming, which includes reboots of “Battlestar Galactica,” from “Mr. Robot” creator Sam Esmail, and “Punky Brewster.”
Original cast members Mario Lopez and Elizabeth Berkley are slated to reprise their roles as A.C. Slater and Jessie Spano for the reboot, but Gosselaar said in September he has not been approached to join the show.
Peacock’s “Saved By the Bell” reboot hails from Universal Television, and will be written and executive produced by Tracey Wigfield. Peter Engel and Franco Bario will executive produce. Pretty good pedigree there, as Engel was an executive producer on “Saved By the Bell,” as well as spinoffs “The College Years” and “The New Class.” Bario produced on all three of those series.
Here is the new version’s perfect logline:
When California governor Zack Morris gets into hot water for closing too many low-income high schools, he proposes they send the affected students to the highest performing schools in the state — including Bayside High. The influx of new students gives the over privileged Bayside kids a much needed and hilarious dose of reality.
TVLine first reported Higgins’ casting.