In the proud tradition of such game show-to-film adaptations as Celebrity Family Feud—for which Meryl Streep won an Oscar—Gambit (the other one), and Jeopardy!, But Three Times As Long, Nickelodeon has announced that it’s bringing back its mid-’90s sick-day staple Legends Of The Hidden Temple as a TV movie set to debut by the end of 2016.
Debuting in September 1993, Legends Of The Hidden Temple aired on Nickelodeon for two years before moving on to the next stage of its life cycle as a fun group Halloween costume. Now that cycle will complete with a live-action narrative feature ”inspired by” the show, which will then air in reruns—or on streaming, as the case may be—for the next few years, then fade into obscurity, then re-emerge as a nostalgia product, and so on.
As far as the adaptation goes, Legends Of The Hidden Temple actually contained a fair amount of backstory that could provide fodder for a script: There’s Olmec, the talking head who guards the temple and informs contestants of the fabulous prizes contained within; the Steps of Knowledge contestants must climb to enter the temple itself; the Pendants of Life used to save contestants from the “temple guards” in Mayan outfits who would jump out from behind doors and scare the crap out of them; and that silver monkey no one ever seemed to be able to assemble in time, among others. It all points to a fun Indiana Jones-style adventure for kids, with some talking red monkeys and silver snakes and such thrown in.
14-year-old actress Isabela Moner, already a Nickelodeon veteran with a regular role on the channel’s live-action series 100 Things To Do Before High School, will star. As long as they don’t cast a Scottish guy as Olmec, everything should be fine.