A TV series adaptation of the hit movie Marley and Me is in the works at 20th Century Fox Television for NBC, which has committed to a pilot.
Based on John Grogan’s bestselling memoir, the funny and poignant 2008 feature film starred Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston as a couple who struggle with the misadventures of a lively, untamable pet dog amid the daily challenges of raising a family. Of course Marley, who is lovable despite his flaws, becomes a cherished member of the family and an ongoing inspiration for John’s newspaper column. Appealing to a wide variety of people, particularly dog lovers, the story has become a treasured property that could potentially do very well on network TV.
The TV show will pick up where the film left off. With a script by Jenny Bicks (Sex and the City), the plotline follows the Grogans, who have recently moved back to Florida so that John can resume his column. Not surprisingly, a new dog soon enters their lives, a stray puppy that previously belonged to some neighbors. When she turns up on the Grogans’ doorstep, the dog, which is just as rambunctious and charming as her predecessor, is given Marley’s tags and leash, prompting the family to call her Marley.
The series will also focus on family growing pains, with sons who are now 14 and 11 entering adolescence. The lives of neighbors and nearby dog owners will also be explored.
Directing the pilot is David Frankel, who directed the feature film. Frankel will also executive produce along with Bicks and one of the original movie’s producers, Karen Rosenfelt.