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Report: 'Murder, She Wrote' reboot is no more

Actress Angela Lansbury in Sydney, Australia, early this

Actress Angela Lansbury in Sydney, Australia, early this year. The actress says “it’s a mistake” for NBC to call a new show “Murder, She Wrote,” though she praises actress Octavia Spencer and wishes her luck. (Jan. 7, 2013) Credit: AP

An update now to those flurry of reports late last year that said NBC had ordered a reboot of "Murder, She Wrote," starring Oscar winner Octavia Spencer: Forget them.

It's over. Done. Kaput. No more. Per Deadline, and confirmed elsewhere, NBC decided the idea was unworkable. Reasons are unclear, but even Angela Lansbury said that the use of the title would probably be a mistake.

Some had argued -- or at least I had argued -- that "Murder" was a supremely successful star-driven vehicle made supremely successful by just one star -- Lansbury -- and that to try to capture that lighting again in a similarly named bottle was not just impossible, but a waste of time -- Spencer's and viewers'.

Networks are going back to these old classics and dusting them off, not because of insufficient imagination, but because they are "pre-sold" concepts the viewers -- presumably older and more reliable, as opposed to younger and utterly unreliable -- will flock to.  

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