Senior living on the big and little screen
Lois A. Bowers
AARP's Movies for Grownups and TV for Grownups awards may have an embarrassment of riches from which to choose if recent articles in the media are any indication.
Retirement communities are becoming a popular setting.
On the silver screen, Morgan Freeman, Tommy Lee Jones and Rene Russo will star in the comedy “Just Getting Started,” which currently has a release date of Dec. 8.
Freeman portrays the fun-loving manager of an upscale retirement community into which Jones, an “ex-military charmer,” moves, according to the film's website. Russo plays the regional director of the community and the object of the men's affections. USA Today posted some photos online Thursday.
On the small screen, Fox reportedly has ordered a pilot of “Cool Kids,” which Deadline Hollywood said Sept. 5 is “high school with 70 somethings,” revolving around three men who rule their retirement community until a woman moves in and challenges them.
And NBC reportedly has committed to a pilot for “Guess Who Died” from “All in the Family” creator Norman Lear. Deadline Hollywood said Aug. 22 that the show, set in a retirement community, “is described as a humorous and inspiring look at the shared joys and challenges we all experience at any stage of life.” Lear reportedly has been trying to get it made for seven years.
The movie definitely is headed for theaters, but there's no guarantee that a pilot for a television show will gain an order for a season's worth of shows. And even if it does, there's no guarantee that a program will be successful. But it's encouraging to see studios and networks trying to diversify their offerings.
Indeed, it'll be an embarrassment of riches unless the efforts degenerate into an embarrassing portrayal of retirement community living. I'm looking forward to heading out and tuning in to find out.
Lois A. Bowers is senior editor of McKnight's Senior Living. Follow her on Twitter at @Lois_Bowers.