Entertainment Night Court Reboot: Plot, Cast, Release Date, and Everything Else We Know
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Court is back in session. NBC has ordered a revival of their iconic comedyset to premiere early next year.
Debuting in 1984, the original series centered on Judge Harry Stone (Harry Anderson), who presided over a Manhattan courthouse's night shift. Stone was the youngest judge on the bench at the time and often took a more unorthodox approach with his cases compared to the more senior officials. Other leading roles included John Larroquette as prosecutor Dan Fielding, Markie Post as public defender Christine Sullivan, Charles Robinson as court clerk Mac Robinson, and Richard Moll as bailiff Bull Shannon. A hit throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, Night Court ran for nine seasons on NBC and racked up a slew of Emmy and Golden Globe Award nominations in the process.
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Development of a revival first began in 2020, with NBC officially placing a series order in May 2021. Just how faithful to the original can we expect this revival to be? Let's look at everything we know ahead of. What can we expect from the plot, and how will it build on the original? Are any cast members returning, and what new faces are joining? When and where will the series be released? And what else should audiences know about the all-new Night Court?
Night Court 2023: The Plot
As mentioned, the original series centered on the officials working the night shift at a New York City courthouse. Harry Stone was the young, new judge who had to prove himself to the court's other skeptical employees. Episodes often revolved around bizarre and eccentric petty criminals pleading their cases to Judge Stone. Initially grounded in realism, later episodes delved more into fantasy and the absurd. These included an episode featuring Wile E. Coyote as a defendant and the character Bull's abduction by aliens from Jupiter in the series finale.
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Currently, there is little specific plot information, but we do have a logline of what we can:
"Unapologetically optimistic judge Abby Stone, the daughter of the late Harry Stone, follows in her father’s footsteps as she presides over the night shift of a Manhattan arraignment court and tries to bring order to its crew of oddballs and cynics, most notably former night court prosecutor Dan Fielding."
From that logline, it sounds like the revival will attempt to follow in the footsteps of its predecessor as closely as possible, and Abby Stone will bring the same enthusiasm for the unconventional night shift as her late father. Additional teasers and trailers with more plot information will likely follow as the premiere approaches.
Night Court: The Cast
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The original cast was led by Harry Anderson as Harry Stone. However, Anderson died in 2018 after a stroke, leading to the incorporation of a new primary character. Enter Harry Stone's daughter Abby, portrayed by The Big Bang Theory star Melissa Rauch. Rauch also serves as executive producer alongside her husband Winston Rauch and Dan Rubin.
We know of at least one alum from the originalas Dan Fielding. The sleazy, narcissistic Fielding became a breakout hit with viewers of the original, even more than lead Anderson. While Larroquette is the only confirmed returner, could we see more old faces return? With the 2021 deaths of Markie Post and Charles Robinson, one of the few surviving members of the original main cast is Richard Moll. While he has not been announced as returning, maybe his Bull Shannon could pop up and explain what happened after he apparently went to Jupiter in the original finale.
Rauch and Larroquette will be joined by several. English actor India de Beaufort, known for roles in shows like One Day at a Time and Firefly Lane, is playing prosecutor Olivia. The court's new bailiff, Donna "Gurgs" Gurganous, will be played by Lacretta, known for guest spots in Law & Order and 30 Rock, among others. Donna is intense, devoted to her work, and overly protective of her court coworkers. She reportedly also shares a small apartment with many large dogs.
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The new cast is rounded out by Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist actor Kapil Talwalkar as court clerk Neil, whose job revolves around keeping everything in the court running smoothly. That is more difficult after the arrival of a young, new judge.
We can expect additional casting information and more details on current cast members as production continues.
Currently, Night Court is expected to premiere on NBC on January 17, 2023. It will air at 8 pm as part of NBC's Tuesday night comedy block with American Auto following.
Several seasons of the original aired on NBC's "Must-See TV" Thursday night comedy block alongside other hugeand Family Ties. That same Thursday block would later be home to some of the biggest comedy hits of all time, like Seinfeld, Friends, Cheers, 30 Rock, and The Office.
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