Is Nickelodeon's 'School of Rock' Like The Movie? The New Series Will Strike A Chord Or Two
Pledge allegiance to the band, because Dewey Finn is having a moment. Not only has a musical adaptation of the 2003 film The School of Rock premiered on Broadway, but a School of Rock series is premiering on Nickelodeon right after the Kid's Choice Awards on Saturday. Will it be different from the movie?
First of all, the overall look is a bit different. The director of the film, Richard Linklater, also directed Boyhood. While Linklater is executive producing the series, his visual style is different from what you're used to seeing on children's television. So the show is going to be a lot brighter and more colorful. Based on Variety's casting announcement, the characters are more detailed and fleshed out. For example, Summer has a crush on Freddie the drummer, and Lawrence has tech skills in addition to musical talent. One of the best things about the movie was demonstrating how important arts education is for kids with varying backgrounds and interests, so this show can really explore that further.
Also, though the original cast had a reunion concert not too long ago (and Nickelodeon superstar Miranda Cosgrove would be a great cameo), it appears that none of the original cast members are returning and School of Rock star Jack Black is not involved — this is a "reboot" adaptation, so to speak. Here are a few of the other similarities and differences you'll notice when School of Rock premieres on Saturday after the Kid's Choice Awards:
The Basic Plot Is The Same...
Both the movie and the Nickelodeon series are about a rocker named Dewey Finn who poses as a substitute teacher at a prestigious private school and turns his class into an awesome band.
... But With Way More Adventures
Since it's a TV show, there's more room and time for side plots that explore the characters outside of the classroom and/or the band.
A Little Less History
From the looks of this music video and another one for "Lips Are Movin,'" it looks like the show and the band are embracing newer hits — not just classic rock.
Fewer Of Your Faves
While Dewey Finn, Principal Mullins (played by Jama Williamson from Parks and Recreation) are on the scene, not all of the students from the movie (and Broadway show, above) made it into the series. Right now, the band members are Zach, Lawrence, Tomika, Summer, and Freddy — the major band members and characters from the movie. It actually looks to me like the characters of Tomika and Katie, the "cello, you got a bass" player from the movie have been combined — because Nickelodeon's Tomika, played by Breanna Yde, plays the bass. In the movie, Tomika was a shy back-up singer who revealed her star vocals towards the end. On the series, she appears to be front and center from the start.
Also missing are Billy the stylist and the rest of the band's "crew" from the main cast. However, since no band is complete without its crew, we'll have to wait and see if those roles are filled in later episodes of School of Rock on Nickelodeon.
Image: Michael Elins/Nickelodeon