Save Yourselves!, a science fiction comedy that debuted at last year’s Sundance Film Festival, had a fun premise: a couple decides to go on a vacation to an isolated cabin and leave their phones off the whole time…but wouldn’t you know it, that’s the exact time that an alien invasion happens nearby.
Now Universal Television and Keshet Studios are taking that premise to the small screen with a Save Yourselves TV show.
Deadline reports that Universal TV is extending its deal with Keshet TV, the L.A.-based production arm of the Israeli media giant. As part of the extension of that partnership, the two companies are developing a TV adaptation of the 2020 film Save Yourselves!, which hailed from writer/directors Eleanor Wilson and Alex H. Fischer and starred Sunita Mani from GLOW and John Reynolds from Search Party. They played Su and Jack, a pair of Brooklyn hipsters who love Whole Foods and dream of the day that they can leave the trappings of the modern world behind them. The only problem is they’re both addicted to their phones. But eventually, they decide to switch off all their devices and go away to a cabin in upstate New York. Here’s how I described the rest of the plot in my full review of the movie:
A few days later, they’re on their way, having changed their voicemails to inform everyone they’re going completely off the grid for a full week. But hilariously, the second they turn off their phones, the camera pans up to reveal aliens penetrating the atmosphere. Set in “the year humankind lost planet Earth,” Save Yourselves! spends some time playing with the tension of the protagonists being clueless and the audience knowing they’re in serious trouble. Bad things begin happening just outside their line of sight, but it’s not until Su breaks their pact and looks at her phone that they realize what’s going on: a race of aliens – all of which look like round, fluffy, decorative pillows, but with long tongues that shoot out of them – is causing chaos across the world and drinking anything involving ethanol, including alcohol and gasoline, making the options to either hunker down or escape exponentially more difficult.
Here’s the trailer:
It’s a premise that worked pretty well in movie form, but it frankly does not seem like a great fit for a TV series – at least on the surface. But there’s a way I could see it working: if the show decides to dramatically expand its storytelling scope and focus on tons of other people (or couples) and depict how they react to the invasion instead of choosing to do just a straight remake of the relatively contained indie film. Unfortunately, there are no details in the Deadline piece about the angle for the show – there’s no talent mentioned (could Mani and Reynolds reprise their roles and pick up with what happened after the credits roll on the film?), no writers, no directors, no producers – nada. In fact, the outlet doesn’t even mention whether Wilson and Fischer are going to be involved with this version of the story.
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