An ‘Ally McBeal’ Revival Is in the Works — Would Calista Flockhart Return?

Calista Flockhart - Ally McBeal
Fox/Courtesy: Everett Collection

At a time when it seems as if revivals (and reboots) are coming at a fast clip, add another: A legal dramedy may be making its return.

A limited series revival of Ally McBeal, in which Calista Flockhart played the titular role, a lawyer at a Boston law firm, is in the works, TVLine reports. Flockhart could very well be returning to play Ally again, and the original series’ creator David E. Kelley would be back as well, as an executive producer likely alongside a female showrunner.

Kelley suggested just that when discussing a potential reboot with The Hollywood Reporter in 2018. “I do think because of the gender politics that were so part and parcel of Ally McBeal, it’s become very relevant and ripe,” he said.

For five seasons, beginning in 1997, Ally McBeal followed the personal lives of Ally and the rest of the law firm alongside court cases. (The series finale aired on May 20, 2002 on Fox.) Series regulars throughout its run included Courtney Thorne-Smith, Greg Germann, Lisa Nicole Carson, Jane Krakowski, Peter MacNicol, Gil Bellows, Vonda Shepard, Portia de Rossi, Lucy Liu, James LeGros, Robert Downey Jr., Regina Hall, Julianne Nicholson, James Marsden, Josh Hopkins, and Hayden Panettiere. Only Flockhart, Germann, and Krakowski were regulars for all five seasons, while Thorne-Smith, Carson, MacNicol, Bellows, and Shepard did appear in every season.

Ally McBeal won seven Emmys, including ones for Comedy Series (in 1999) and Supporting Actor (MacNicol in 2001), and was nominated for 27 more. The legal dramedy won two Golden Globes for Best Television Series — Comedy or Musical (in 1998 and 1999) and was nominated in that category three more times. Flockhart won one Golden Globe (in 1998) and was nominated four more times, while Downey also took home a Golden Globe and Krakowski was nominated.

Gil Bellows Greg Germann Calista Flockhart Jane Krakowski Ally McBeal

Fox/ Courtesy: Everett Collection

If this revival does happen — the report says it’s in the “early stages” — it would join other shows that have come back, are back, or could be coming back, including Will & Grace, The Wonder Years (a reboot is currently in the pilot stage at ABC), Leverage, iCarly, and Dexter.