Bad Mothers producers want to adapt the series for U.S. audiences.
Bad Mothers may be the next international drama getting remade for American TV.
According to multiple media reports Jungle Entertainment, which produces the Australian series, is actively preparing Bad Mothers for an American version. No U.S. network or studio is mentioned yet, so this seems to be very early on in the process.
Regardless, it’s definitely a gamble. The original series has been streaming on Sundance Now since May and has rightfully captivated viewers all on its own.
In Bad Mothers, Sarah (Tess Haubrich) watches her perfect life go upside down when she discovers that her husband is cheating on her with her best friend—and that best friend ends up dead shortly thereafter, with Sarah’s husband being accused of the murder.
While trying to prove her husband’s innocence, Sarah falls in with a group of less than perfect moms (Shalom Brune-Franklin, Mandy McElhinney, and Jessica Tovey) who become her unexpected new friends as she deals with this personal crisis and comes to terms with the fact that her world isn’t as perfect as she believed.
It’s an incredible series, but the largest reason why Bad Mothers works is because of its cast and the dynamics in the show. It’s not the “whodunit” that kept audiences’ attention.
That came from Tess Haubrich and her portrayal of a woman scorned that wasn’t just about fire and brimstone and angst, and the rapport she built with Daniel MacPherson, who likewise made sure Sarah’s husband Anton had actual layers to him. They created an honest and moving look at the inner workings of a marriage, and who’s to say if other actors could do that or that the U.S. version wouldn’t oversimplify Sarah and Anton’s issues?
Plus, all of the “bad mothers” were so well cast in their roles, and there would also be a danger of turning them into a stereotypical bunch of quirky characters. One needs only to look at the U.S. remake of Coupling which, despite re-using some of the scripts from the hit British series, ended up being little more than a stereotypical American sitcom.
Not every American version of an international show is a disaster (see: The Office), but Jungle will want to be careful in adapting Bad Mothers to make sure any U.S. counterpart preserves the story and casts actors who are able to dig deeper than just “Who killed Charlotte?”
In fact, a better idea would be commissioning Bad Mothers series 2 and finding a plot to bring back the excellent original cast. The series is still available on Sundance Now and will get a DVD release in October; more details can be found by clicking the banner below.
All eight episodes of Bad Mothers are available to stream on Sundance Now. Watch now with a 7-day free trial.