The Wonder Years has found the new face for the beloved lead character, Kevin Arnold.
According to Deadline, staple actor Fred Savage officially announced the name of the young actor that will be taking over the role of the boy next door. On Monday, original series star Fred Savage virtually broke the news to actor Elisha “E.J.” Williams that he’d landed the lead role of 12-year-old Dean, who comes of age in the late 1960s.
The new Wonder Years will be written by Saladin K. Patterson and will focus on a Black family in Montgomery, Alabama.
The original series takes place from 1968 to 1973 and was filmed in Los Angeles, though its setting was deliberately never specified on-screen. Setting the reboot in Alabama will provide Patterson with plenty of material to dramatize, given the state’s historic ties to major events of the Civil Rights movement.
As previously reported, prior to ABC’s decision to revive the iconic dramedy, fans were continuously asking for the reboot, an idea that Savage himself shut down in 2019.
“To take nothing away from ‘The Brady Bunch’ — I’m an avid fan — but nostalgia was kind of built into the identity of ‘The Wonder Years,’ at the heart of the show, and you would violate that by going back,”Fred savage told the New York Post at the time. “I love all the reboots and revisitation and reimaginings of all these shows, but I don’t think it works, conceptually, for ‘The Wonder Years.’”
In addition to Williams, the confirmed cast includes Saycon Sengbloh as Lillian, Dean’s mother. Savage will direct the show’s pilot and serve as an executive producer with “Empire” creator Lee Daniels. No release date has been announced yet.
Check out the big announcement below.