First Wives Club TV Reboot Casts Jill Scott and Michelle Buteau
For years there have been rumors of a sequel to the 1996 cult classic, The First Wives Club. This film starred Diane Keaton, Goldie Hawn, and Bette Midler as three divorced women seeking revenge on their ex-husbands who left them for younger women. Despite receiving mixed reviews, the film grossed over $181,490,000 worldwide and gained a huge following particularly among middle-aged women.
In 2004, after confirming the main ladies interest in being involved, writer Paul Rudnick reportedly began writing a draft for the anticipated sequel entitled Avon Ladies of the Amazon. A year later, Midler confirmed to USA Today that there was indeed a manuscript but that "the strike kept it from happening”. However, in a 2006 interview with the New York Daily News, Hawn declared that Paramount Pictures had declined the trio's services due to their demand for an increase in fees: "I got a call from the head of the studio, who said, 'Let's try to make it work. But I think we should all do it for the same amount of money.' Now, if there were three men that came back to do a sequel, they would have paid them three times their salary at least." 10 years later Hawn confirmed that Netflix was working on a sequel, though she also admitted that "the script isn’t working”.
For now we still don’t know if we will be getting that sequel or not however, we will be getting a reboot, a television reboot that is. Girls Trip co-writer Tracy Oliver and Paramount Television are teaming up for a 10-episode series based on the hit film.
The First Wives Club series, like the film, will be based in New York City. It follows three
women, Ari, Bree (Buteau) and Hazel (Scott) who band together after their marriages fall apart and find strength in their sisterhood (while taking their revenge of course).
Scott’s Hazel played by Grammy winner and actress Jill Scott (Why Did I Get Married?, Baggage Claim) is a gorgeous music superstar who has faded from the limelight and lost the confidence she once had. She has a raw talent and a killer voice that’s been silenced by her husband/manager Sean for years. When she realizes that he’s been unfaithful in both business and marriage, she is ready to wreak havoc and assert her artistic identity.
Comedian Michelle Buteau (VH1’s Best Week Ever) plays Bree, an overwhelmed mom and doctor who hasn’t let loose in years. She is fiercely loyal and committed, so when her husband cheats on her, she is deeply betrayed and not ready to forgive. With the help of Hazel and Ari, she learns to harness her sexual energy and break out of her shell.
Oliver is writing the series and is executive producing along with Karen Rosenfelt (Twilight saga, The Devil Wears Prada) and Scott Rudin, who produced the First Wives Club movie that, in turn, was based on the 1992 novel by Olivia Goldsmith. There has been no word on who will round out the scorned trio or the rest of the cast for that matter but, in regards to working with Scott and Buteau, Oliver says, “I’m beyond thrilled to work with the inimitable Jill Scott and the always hilarious Michelle Buteau. Both artists bring unique talents to this project and as a collective, between Jill’s beautiful music and dynamic on-screen work and Michelle’s incredible comedic timing, their joining First Wives Club makes for the start of a very special cast. I am very excited to see their characters come to life.”