Most recently revived as a brilliant Super Bowl commercial, Bill Murray's co-star Stephen Tobolowsky says he's been approached about reprising his role in a possible television sequel series.
One of the most iconic films of all time may have felt like forever to Bill Murray's beleaguered weatherman Phil Connors, but "Groundhog Day" lasted less than two hours in theaters. Now the eternally repeating day could go on for years.
An instant classic when it hit theaters in 1993, there was something about "Groundhog Day" that captured the imagination of the nation and hasn't let go in nearly 30 years.
A recent Super Bowl commercial featuring the return of Murray and Stephen Tobolowsky's chipper Ned Ryerson proved a highlight of the game and proved that America is still just as enamored with the film and its crazy premise of a guy waking up to the same day over and over again as they ever were.
And while Phil may have escaped his eternal purgatory by the end of that film, it looks like Punxsutawney may not be done imparting life lessons on people through repetition. And it looks like at least one familiar smiling face from the film might be back, too.
While not confirmed or announced or even hinted at in any official capacity, Tobolowsky said he was approached by a producer about the project.
"One of the producers -- I was working on 'Goldbergs' or 'Schooled,' one of those shows over on the Sony lot -- and one of them saw me and goes, 'Oh, Stephen! We're working on a 'Groundhog Day' TV show. Could you be Ned for the TV show?'" Tobolowsky told The Production Meeting podcast. "I go, 'Sure, yeah, no problem.'"
While he didn't have much more to say about it -- because there probably isn't much more to say at this point -- he did say they were looking at it as a sequel set 30 years after the original.
That means other alums from around the town could make appearances as well. Much like Bryan Doyle-Murray did in the aforementioned Super Bowl commercial earlier this year.
While it seems unlikely Bill Murray would be interested in reprising his role -- and he did, after all, learn his lesson -- the premise is wide open for anyone to fall into the clutches of Punxsatawney Phil. Note that the film never explains how or why Murray's character winds up stuck in a time loop, so blaming the groundhog is as good a guess as any.
One of fans' favorite things about the original film is its meticulous attention to detail as Phil repeated the same day over and over again, and that same repetition extended over a season or series could make for even more fun Easter eggs and treats for fans.
In time, they'll come to be as familiar to the beats of the day as Phil was, leaving all sorts of interesting and tantalizing possiblities for how to twist the expected events into something new.
The film also rushed through Phil's approaches to his repetitious days, from random acts of insanity, kindness, education and even suicide attempts. A television show could slow down to explore its protagonist's exploration of this new normal and their slow mental break.
The show could either follow the same lead for multiple seasons stuck in the same day, or even switch it up with new leads anthology style but all living in that same world a la "Fargo."
Fans have been clamoring for a sequel to "Groundhog Day," one of the most critically-acclaimed and beloved films of all time, but it's possible that a TV series would be the best way to really dig in and let its brilliance breathe.
Plus, with the guaranteed goofy smile of insurance salesman Ned Ryerson as a constant annoyance, you can guarantee the laughs will be as big as the philosophy.