Degrassi HBO Reboot What We Know

Sharpen those pencils, because school is back!

Baby, there’s a shark in the water! After almost five years of no new Degrassi episodes, school is BACK in session.

On Jan. 13, it was announced that HBO Max has officially greenlit a Degrassi reboot, set to stream in 2023.


Nickelodeon Network / Courtesy Everett Collection

Obviously, as a superfan, I’m thrilled — and admittedly nervous! Here’s everything we know so far:

School is back in session. Thrilled to be partnering with @hbomax on a new #Degrassi series from @WildBrainHQ! https://t.co/g3qW5vLp24 https://t.co/2aenyPBjUg

1.

WildBrain (previously known as DHX Media) is producing the new series in partnership with HBO Max.


CATV / Courtesy Everett Collection

Although it will stream on HBO, the show falls under the WarnerMedia Kids & Family section. So while the reboot will likely have the freedom to “go there,” I wouldn’t expect Degrassi to turn into Euphoria

“I’m delighted that our first-ever commission from HBO Max is for Degrassi, a truly venerable franchise with a highly devoted and passionate audience,” WildBrain CEO Eric Ellenbogen said in a Variety article. “This is yet another evergreen property from our vast IP library that we are reviving with a fresh vision and creative-first approach.”

2.

The series will consist of 10 hour-long episodes per season.


Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

This is a shift from Next Class, which had 24-minute long episodes. The show has never been done in an hour-long format, so I’m definitely interested to see how this will change things. 

3.

The new showrunners, Lara Azzopardi and Julia Cohen, have a long resume in the field of teen dramas.

The news is finally out! @azzzy and I couldn’t be more excited to have the baton passed to us from @stephenstohn and Linda as Degrassi begins this exciting new chapter. (1/3)
‘Degrassi’: New Series Greenlit at HBO Max, ‘Next Generation’ to Stream in Spring https://t.co/taCpzB6IrW


Twitter: @CohenJulia

Original creators and executive producers Linda Schuyler and Stephen Stohn are passing the baton on.

Azzopardi created the Canadian drama series Backstage — which aired on Family Channel and Disney Channel from 2016-2017 — and has also worked on The Bold Type, The LA Complex (which starred Degrassi alumnus Cassie Steele, aka THE Manny Santos), 911, Mary Kills, and others. Cohen has worked as a writer and producer on A Million Little Things, Riverdale, Legion, Quantico, Dallas, and others. Both have also written Degrassi: The Next Generation episodes.

“What excites us maybe the most about reviving this beloved franchise is turning it into a truly serialized one-hour drama,” Azzopardi and Cohen said in a recent WildBrain press release. “We’re honored to be given the opportunity to lead this evolution and bring this iconic series back into people’s homes.”

4.

HBO Max bought the rights to all 14 seasons of Degrassi: The Next Generation. However, Next Class remains under Netflix.


Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

All 14 seasons of TNG will be available to stream on HBO Max in the US starting sometime this spring. Now, as far as the rights go — this is admittedly above my pay grade, but I’d imagine characters who appeared in TNG before Next Class (ie. the Hollingsworth siblings, Lola, Shay, Maya, etc.) might still be able to make cameos, while I’m doubtful that characters who were exclusively on Next Class (Saad, Rasha, Baaz, Goldi, Vijay, Esme, and Yael) could come back under the current agreement.

5.

Casting has yet to be announced, but the show will begin shooting in summer of 2022 in Toronto.


Keith Beaty / Toronto Star via Getty Images

DHX Media sold the Degrassi set in 2019. It’s unknown if the reboot would try to use the original set still, or start fresh with a new building. I don’t know about you all, but if The Dot, the ravine, and Lola’s Cantina aren’t featured, I will be very upset!

6.

The series is expected to start fresh with a new cast of characters for the next generation.


George Pimentel / WireImage / Getty Images

Unlike Next Class, which more or less picked up from where Season 14 left off, this reboot is starting with a clean slate. “Now in its fourth decade, Degrassi is one of those beloved evergreen properties that demands to be refreshed for each new generation,” WildBrain President Josh Scherba said in a press release. “Stephanie Betts, our Chief Content Officer, along with showrunners, Lara Azzopardi and Julia Cohen, have envisioned an evolution for Degrassi that, while staying true to the fundamental honesty, humanity and integrity of the brand, promises fans a journey into exciting new territory, both creatively and dramatically. We’re delighted to be partnering with HBO Max to deliver this new vision to fans and extend Degrassi’s legacy.”

7.

BUT, that doesn’t mean there won’t (possibly) be cameos from former Degrassi students and/or faculty.

Soooo….Zoe Rivas is going to be the Drama class TA? 😇 The new students def want a cute teacher that greets them with “Bonjour Bitches”. 💁🏻‍♀️ https://t.co/iQlgO9emYb


Twitter: @TheAnaGolja

Ana Golja (who played our iconic lesbian queen Zoë Rivas) is already campaigning for her character’s return. Other TNG cast members, such as Daniel Clark (Sean), Cassie Steele (Manny), and Lauren Collins (Paige) have shared their excitement for the reboot. And Degrassi producers, if you’re reading this…may I remind you that Amanda Arcuri and Eric Osborne also said in a BuzzFeed interview that they would be totally down to cameo (hopefully as a couple, finally)?! Also, imagine the absolute chaos that would ensue if Drake (who started off as Jimmy Brooks) made a cameo.

8.

The show will focus more on the home lives of characters.


CTV

This was something from early TNG that I definitely missed in the later seasons. The WildBrain press release states: “The show travels deep into the hearts and homes of diverse, complicated characters, as they struggle to find their new normal, reaching for hope, redemption and love.”

9.

And finally, my personal favorite — V V Brown wants to do another “Shark in the Water” promo!

View this video on YouTube


Capitol Records / TeenNick

If you turned on the TV at any point during the summer of 2010, there’s no way this TeenNick promo doesn’t still live in your head rent free. And if we’re lucky, we just might get a new edition! “I would love to recreate a new version of Shark in the water for the @HBO Degrassi. I’m gonna get on the folks,” singer VV Brown tweeted. Um, YES??!

Are you excited for the Degrassi reboot? Which characters are you hoping to see again? Do you think Emma and Spinner are still married? Let us know in the comments!


Twitter: @patmastroianni

Source: BuzzFeed – Celebrity

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