Not unlike the puzzles that a certain teen detective has solved, the possibility of a Veronica Mars movie is somewhat of a mystery. Will it ever be written? Even more importantly, will a studio actually back a film based on a little-watched TV show? It won’t take a “Nancy Drew” to solve this one, just a writer that can’t seem to get this character out of his head.
Veronica Mars is the longtime pet project of series creator Rob Thomas. It began as a young adult novel, with a male teen detective as the main character. After writing other projects for television (Dawson’s Creek, Cupid), Thomas developed it as a series with a female protagonist and Kristen Bell in the starring role. Other series performers include Enrico Colantoni, Percy Daggs III, Jason Dohring, Francis Capra, Ryan Hansen, Teddy Dunn, Michael Muhney, Tina Majorino, Brandon Hillock, Kyle Gallner, Tessa Thompson, Julie Gonzalo, Chris Lowell, Daran Norris, Duane Daniels, Harry Hamlin, and Amanda Seyfried.
As the show begins, we learn that Veronica had been a popular high school student, living with her father, Sheriff Keith Mars, in the fictional town of Neptune, CA. Her best friend, Lilly, was murdered, and Sheriff Mars accused Lilly’s father. The town turned against Mars and ousted him in a recall election. He opened up his own detective agency and her mother inexplicably left town. With a little help from her friends, Veronica began solving mysteries, both big and small.
Though the show’s ratings were never very high, Veronica Mars was still a cult hit. It barely escaped being cancelled twice. When it looked like the show might be cancelled the third time, Thomas filmed a mini-pilot for season four. It featured a slightly-older Veronica working as an FBI agent. The network didn’t buy it and the show was cancelled after three years.
Thomas didn’t give the series a finite ending and said that he wanted to continue the show in some form, possibly as a feature film. Thomas’ schedule quickly filled up with work, most notably a new version of ABC’s Cupid, and he couldn’t find the time to work on a Veronica movie.
Not long ago, ABC decided to reduce its Cupid episode order, from 13 installments to eight. That left Thomas with a little time on his hands. As he told E!, “What that means for me is that I have a couple of months to write the Veronica Mars movie.”
While fans might expect the movie to revolve around Veronica solving crimes with the FBI, Thomas reveals that the script will find the sleuth on the cusp of graduating from Hearst College. And though he hasn’t actually written the script yet, he does have most of the plot points worked out on the dry-erase board at his house.
Bell has consistently expressed interest in doing a Veronica movie and Thomas says that he’s also talked to both costars Colantoni and Dohring.
The next step is for Thomas to secure funding for the movie. As Thomas says, series producer “Joel Silver does have a certain pile of money that he can decide on, and he called me asking, ‘Can we do this now?'”
Of course, he’ll still have to pitch his story idea to Silver and Warner Bros. execs. Thomas plans to do that very soon but tells EW, “It’s entirely possible I won’t have an answer at the end of the pitch… They will want to consider [the pitch], look at some numbers — whatever it is people on the business side do — and then they’ll give me some sort of response. Then, if they want to move forward, there’s the deal-making that’ll need to go on.”
Will the Veronica Mars movie actually be made? Unfortunately, the answer to that question will have to remain a mystery for a little while longer.
Image courtesy Warner Bros.