Cena vs. Hasselhoff: Who Will Star in the Latest ‘Knight Rider’ Reboot?
Will the Hoff reprise his famous role or will John Cena take his place?
In September of 1982, Knight Rider premiered on NBC, starring David Hasselhoff as police detective-turned-F.L.A.G. field agent Michael Knight. The Foundation for Law and Government (F.L.A.G.) was a high-tech organization led by billionaire Wilton Knight. The affluent man selected Michael as his primary agent, changed his last name to Knight, and provided him with a technologically advanced Pontiac Firebird Trans Am named KITT (Knight Industries Two Thousand) to help him fight crime. The show became an instant pop culture classic and lasted four seasons, coming to a close in April of 1986.
Knight Rider returns, again and again and again and again…
After the original series ended, fans hoped to see Michael Knight and KITT again. Luckily for them, quite a few television and film producers were clamoring to have their shot at remaking the show. From 1991 to 2015, audiences saw the creation of three TV movies, two new TV series, and a weird spinoff called Code of Vengeance.
Knight Rider 2000
In 1991, the TV movie Knight Rider 2000 premiered as a sequel to the original series. It was intended to be a pilot for a proposed new series but even though the TV movie received high praise from fans, the new series never came to fruition.
Knight Rider 2010
Then, in 1994, Knight Rider 2010—another TV movie—was released (no Hoff this time) and although the name suggested it was a direct follow-up to the 1991 TV film, it was very loosely based on the original Knight Rider series.
Team Knight Rider
A spinoff series, Team Knight Rider, premiered on NBC in 1997 and lasted just one season. The show was based on a team of crime fighters working for F.L.A.G. (Foundation for Law and Government) that were following the footsteps of Michael Knight and KITT.
Knight Rider (2008)
In February of 2008, NBC premiered a new TV movie, simply called Knight Rider. The made for TV movie was pitched as a continuation of the original 1982 series and it also served as a pilot for an upcoming television series of the same name.
The NBC show Knight Rider premiered in September of 2008 and was very obviously sponsored by Ford, with companion commercials that played on the network at the time. Although the show was originally supposed to have 22 epsidoes, NBC reduced this to 17 and canceled the series in March of 2009.
Knight of the living dead
The Knight Rider franchise seemed to be dead at this point. There couldn’t possibly be any more reboots in the works after each of those canceled shows and cheesy TV movies. However, at the end of 2015, a very short and ostensibly fan-made trailer for something called Knight Rider Heroes surfaced on YouTube. Starring David Hasselhoff himself, the video first showed a cryptic message about F.L.A.G. seemingly ending but that the organization had actually gone underground and was reinitiated.
Although there was a somewhat professional website for this new venture, nothing seems to have happened since the video premiered, as there is no record of the project on IMDb.com or anywhere else, really. The Hoff’s costar, Anthony Marcus, has an Instagram profile that has just three photos, with the latest update in May 2016.
The Hoff says a new show is in the works
Just like me, David Hasselhoff is shocked that fans want yet another Knight Rider reboot, as he stated in an interview with the Metro newspaper. On October 25, 2016, it was announced that The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift director Justin Lin would collaborate with NBC to create yet another reboot of Knight Rider, possibly premiering on a streaming service.
The show was originally slated to be released in 2017, but nothing has been updated about the remake since the initial announcement.
John Cena as Michael Knight?????
But wait! Reports back in 2014 stated that there would be a comedic movie reboot of the classic TV show, similar to the mega-popular 21 Jump Street reboots. Initially, Chris Pratt and Danny McBride were being considered for the main roles of Michael and KITT, but recent rumors have none other than John Cena and Kevin Hart portraying the dynamic duo. No word on how the Hoff is taking the news.
Cena, who is very much alive, is currently filming a different auto-related film, while Hart has four new films lined up between now and 2018.
Why not women?
Of course, there’s always the option of switching up everything and having a woman in the lead role of a potential Knight Rider remake, with an all-female supporting cast. Although I’m sure it would get a ton of fanboys’ undies in a knot (Ghostbusters, anyone?), it seems like this guy is totally on board with the idea: