Before Judd Apatow was the director known for Knocked Up and The 40 Year-Old Virgin, he was an executive producer on a short-lived but much-loved school-set TV series: Freaks & Geeks was the show, and its young cast featured Linda Cardellini, James Franco, Seth Rogen and Jason Segel.
There are a lot of reasons why Freaks & Geeks seems like the ideal show for Netflix – or a similar streaming service – to bring back with a modern day revival. The cast are all stars, the show’s fanbase is huge, and the original run was tragically short. Given that Arrested Development, Gilmore Girls and Full House have already made comebacks via Netflix, you might expect Freaks & Geeks to do the same.
Now, in a new interview, Judd Apatow has explained why this hasn’t happened:
“I only think we would ever be interested in revisiting it because we had an idea that we thought was as strong as the original idea. I don’t think there is a number that would make us do it as a cash grab. But if [showrunner] Paul Feig woke up in the middle of night and said ‘I’ve figured it out,’ then something like that becomes real. I don’t believe that has ever been his intention. We always felt like we ended on an oddly perfect, magical note. And most of the ideas that Paul wanted to express, he got to express. You know, we were compressed in Freaks and Geeks because we thought we were gonna get canceled at any moment. So we used most of our great ideas. The next phase of the show would’ve been all of the geeks suddenly being six feet tall and how that would change their relationships. And so it probably would’ve ruined the show anyways.”
Essentially, then, the central golden idea to necessitate a comeback hasn’t been struck upon. And until that happens, Apatow and Feig do not see the worth in just bringing Freaks & Geeks back for the sake of it. This is a fair decision, not least because both of these talented chaps have plenty of other projects to be working on.
If we hear any more about the Freaks & Geeks revival prospects, we’ll be sure to let you know.