The Greatest American Hero May Fly Again, With Pilot Order at Fox

The Greatest American Hero

Believe it or not… The Greatest American Hero is poised to fight another day.

According to our sister site Deadline, Fox has given a put pilot order (i.e. virtually guaranteed to air) to a remake of the unlikely superhero series, which ran for three seasons on ABC in the early 1980s.

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The original series, which starred William Katt, Robert Culp and Connie Sellecca, revolved around a mild-mannered teacher named Ralph who inherits from aliens a suit that affords him superhuman abilities.

Thing is, Ralph loses the instructions for the suit, making for all manner of mayhem and mishaps as he teams with FBI agent Bill Maxwell (Culp) to save the world.

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In Fox’s remake, Ralph is now inner-city school teacher Isaac. The Lego Movie writers-directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller will shepherd the project, which is being written by Rodney Rothman (22 Jump Street, Late Show With David Letterman).

Do you want to see the Greatest American Hero fly again? If so, who would you cast in the lead role? And they kinda have to keep the theme song, yes?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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64 Comments
  1. Once at Comic-Con I had the chance to take a picture with all three of them but my stupid phone didn’t save it :(

  2. Alex says:

    Good god NO…Lets come up with something new and original for once!

  3. Carla Krae says:

    I still remember the theme song! One of my favorite shows as a kid. So funny.

  4. Zach says:

    Rothman also wrote for Undeclared, so this should be awesome. Also, Zachary Levi would be perfect for this.

  5. Flowbee Rida says:

    I dont think a remake of this could (or should) work…but if i HAD to cast it, I would cast Zachary Levi in the William Katt role, and while Adam Baldwin would seem the obvious choice for the Culp role, its almost too obvious (and typecast), so i would look at making a major switch there and make the role female, with someone older so as not to turn it into a romantic possibility. Maybe Jeri Ryan?

    • Ben says:

      Zachary Levi oh yes. That would be fantastic. A little bit of a retread in a way, but I think it would be awesome.

    • Patrick says:

      Here’s the thing. One of the reasons that the original cratered was because the FX tech at the time simply wasn’t up to the task. A super hero show with bad FX? Pass.
      .
      With good FX, this show could be pretty good. And yes, Levi would be great, and I mean GREAT, in this.

  6. Angela says:

    No they need to leave the classics ALONE. GAH is a great show, been watching it on HULU PLUS. William Katt is perfect in the role

  7. BTM says:

    Hmmm. For the Robert Culp role, I could see several different types, such as Chi McBride, Tim DeKay or Kathy Bates.

    Taraji P. Henson from Person of Interest or Felicia Day for the Connie Sellecca role.

    As to Mr. H. himself, I’d love to see either Michael Ealy or NPH. Either could do it justice.

  8. A. D. says:

    Yes! Please cast this well and include the song!

  9. arial2 says:

    Fox guy: “Hey, I’ve got a great idea. There’s this show that ran for 44 episodes in the 80s and was cancelled. Let’s re-do it because that’s what we want, two seasons and gone.” Insane. Why doesn’t Fox just hire writers who have the imagination to create something new?

  10. Hannah says:

    I’m only for this if they keep the original theme song

  11. Maria says:

    Mark Valley for the lead role. But…umm…it’s FOX so it’s just going to get cancelled anyway.

  12. Maryann says:

    I would definitely check it out. Whether I would put it on my schedule would depend on how good a job they did with it. Uh…wait. Isn’t this the network that cancelled their second highest rated show (Almost Human) for “low ratings”? It had higher ratings than both Bones and The Following. At any rate, I don’t trust Fox not to pull the plug on another scifi show.

  13. Drew says:

    I still don’t get why people are always so anti-remake. There have been plenty of remakes, reboots and retoolings over the years that have worked out just fine. It all comes down to the people making the show. In that respect, it has as much chance of working out as any other show.

    • Ben says:

      Yeah, I know, every person who is against it on the basis that we should come up with ‘something creatively new’…. I just feel like responding by saying “yeah, and I’ve heard they were thinking of remaking Battlestar Galactica too, what a terrible idea”…

      It’s a shame when people make a remake and it sucks. It is fantastic when people make a remake and its awesome. I’ll definitely be hoping this one is awesome.

  14. Kirti Patel says:

    Hope Bill Cosby plays Robert Culp’s old role.

  15. 1927BugattiGirl says:

    What about William Katt for the Robert Culp role?

    • maggie says:

      Excellent idea!

    • DarkDefender says:

      Katt should be the new teacher’s dad or something.. With sporadic cameos. I think Zachary Levi would be wrong (too close to Chuck). I like the idea of Bill Cosby in the Culp role.. For the lead, NPH probably would be wasted, but Josh Radnor would be kinda perfect or B.J. Britt (only if SHIELD is dumb enough to lose him) or maybe even Sean Hayes.

  16. James D says:

    Yes please used to love wathcing the original it was pure camp and I loved it. Is Nathan Fillion involved I know from listening to interviews of him he’s would love to play Ralph.

  17. Eric says:

    With the creators and writers behind this remake, it has the potential to be really, truly good. Even for a remake! Bring it on, Fox — I’ll be watching.

  18. Sheldon Wiebe says:

    Mark Valley for Agent Bill Maxwell (or equivalent); Cote de Pablo or Katee Sackhoff for Pam Davidson (or equivalent), and Warren Cole (Common Law) for Ralph Hinckley (or equivalent).

    I can dream, can’t I?

  19. jane mark says:

    Loved the theme song ‘Believe it or not am walking on air…’

  20. jalahyacinth says:

    Only if they use the Gilmore Girls version :P Hep Alien for life.

  21. azu says:

    I sincerely think fox is foolish. So they cancelled almost human to create space for this trash? Waoh!!

  22. KenL says:

    Okay….JORGE GARCIA…..

    I know. At first. WTF. But, I could REALLY see it working with him as the lead.

  23. jj says:

    Only if it is done right. i.e. Not like NBC’s attempted remake of Bionic Woman.

  24. James Born says:

    i hate to burst peoples bubbles about zachary levi or NPH being the star but if read the article to the end you would notice he is now an inner city school teacher named Isaac. To me that says the character will be african-american.

  25. Dawn says:

    I would love the greatest American hero to come back on tv.

  26. Rob Hardie says:

    Dax Shepherd or Mike Birbiglia

  27. Michelle says:

    Zachary Levi would be great

  28. Ronald Gold says:

    I would definitely give it a try, loved the original when it was on. I think Zachary Levi would be great as the GAH, and Chi McBride as the FBI agent would work, oh yes they must bring back the original theme song.

  29. Anon says:

    This will and should go the exact route as the Wonder Woman remake!

  30. Cobra says:

    It is barely memorable as it and they want to renake it? Wgy?

  31. LEP says:

    If this is the last season of Bones, that might free up T. J. Thyne (Dr. Hodgins) for the role of GAH. He’s got that zany, geeky persona dow!

  32. iceblast says:

    I’d rather the instruction manual isn’t even mentioned in the reboot. I’d rather he be given the suit, and has to figure out how to use it, without ever having a chance at having instructions on how to use it.

  33. Cobra says:

    Believe it or not George isn’t at home
    Please leave a message at the beep
    I must be out or I’d pick up the phone
    Where could I be?
    Believe it or not I’m not home.

  34. KC says:

    First – yes to this and totally yes to keeping the original theme song!!! The only way this will work is to have a dream cast – I’m just not sure who can pull this off…

  35. Steve S says:

    How are Christopher Titus as the lead

  36. Mary Ottinger says:

    Our Family would love it, My son had to have a cape and the whole outfit, I couldn’t get it off him except bed time, he wore it for 2 years and with a wig for Halloween. he is 30 something now and I just gave him the T shirt and the DVD package for his Birthday .

  37. Kimo says:

    Just reading that this might happen put a smile on my face! I loved the original show and we need something fun and fantasy-like these days. For sure, keep the original song. And Zachary Levi would be fantastic in the role. Hope, hope, hope!

  38. R says:

    Karl Urban or Mark Valley for the Culp role,,,it needs someone who can be authoritative and cop like.

  39. Don says:

    Chris Meloni in the Robert Culp role.

  40. ncmacasl says:

    The original was really good. a sci-fi adventure with lots of comedic layers (a la Chuck). In fact, Zachary Levi would be perfect for it except it would be almost identical to his Chuck role.

  41. Brigid says:

    I absolutely LOVED this show! I remember watching the pilot episode with my dad who never really watched TV. He laughed so hard when Ralph flew into the billboard that I always treasure that memory with him. The BEST theme song ever!!!!

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