Seems Lifetime has decided to devote itself wholly to a #TBT content strategy. First came Flowers in the Attic; then they announced Aaliyah and Whitney Houston biopics; and now you can set your DVRs for The Unauthorized Saved by the Bell, scheduled to debut Labor Day weekend.
That's according to BuzzFeed, who revealed the cast list (put together by Robin Lippin casting director for the original sitcom). Degrassi: The Next Generation's Dylan Everett will play Mark-Paul Gosselaar (Zack); Shameless's Sam Kindseth will play Dustin Diamond (Screech); Paranormal Activity's Julian Works will play Mario Lopez (Slater); unknown Alyssa Lynch will pay Tiffani-Amber Thiessen (Kelly); Supernatural's Tiera Skovbye will play poor Elizabeth Berkley (Jessie); Blink's Taylor Russell McKenzie will play Lark Voorhies (Lisa).
Right off the bat here I want to say there's no way any modern human young person can replicate the ineffable early-90s-ness of Tiffani-Amber Thiessen. I think maybe it's got something to do with the hair products of the time?
Expectations for trashy shenanigans will likely run high, thanks to Screech's notorious 2009 tell-all. But he blames the outrageous tales of sex and drugs on a rogue ghostwriter, and BuzzFeed says the movie is based on a bunch of brand-new interviews. The Hollywood Reporter's prediction sounds downright boring:
The Unauthorized Saved by the Bell Story promises to expose the challenges of growing up under the public scrutiny while trying to maintain a squeaky clean image of their characters on- and off-screen.
Come on, Lifetime, you're gonna have to do better than that. My childhood won't ruin itself.