The critically acclaimed comedy Peep Show is set to receive a gender-swapped US remake with two females in the lead roles, rather than two men as in the original series.
After the success of the US iteration of The Office, it’s not surprising a version of Peep Show would eventually make its way across the pond.
It’s not the first time it has been attempted though, as Starz aimed to develop a remake in 2016 before abandoning their attempt, while Fox made a pilot – starring The Big Bang Theory‘s Johnny Galecki – in 2005, which thankfully never went to series. Spike TV also attempted a remake, but gave up in 2008.
Now, however, it seems FX Networks are on course to be the first studio to get a US version of Peep Show to series, swapping out the two male leads for females.
The news was revealed by one of the writers of the original series, Sam Bain, in The Guardian.
Bain was writing about diversity in comedy, the issue of race in his upcoming film Corporate Animals, and looking back at his work on Peep Show, which ran for nine series from 2003 to 2015.
People sometimes ask if I look at my earlier work differently now – whether my shows would have been better if they had been more diverse.
What would Peep Show have been like with women as the two leads? It’s a great question – and it’s one I’ll shortly have the answer to, because there is a script in development for a US Peep Show with two female leads.
While there’s no word of who might be taking up the roles as female versions of Mark and Jeremy, originally played by David Mitchell and Robert Webb, respectively, Bain did add the script is being penned by ‘top comedy brain’ Karey Dornetto, who has written for Portlandia, Arrested Development and Community, among others.
Bain said when he started working on Peep Show, he didn’t have ‘the confidence to write women as leads’ because ‘it just seemed natural, as a man, to write men.’
Now, however, he’s looking forward to seeing the new version, saying:
Ultimately, the best way of building gender inclusivity into scripts is to get women to write them. I can’t wait to find out what sick and twisted bullshit goes on inside the minds of a pair of female losers.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.