Baywatch

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Baywatch
Baywatch-logo.svg
Also known asBaywatch: Hawaii (1999–2001)
Genre
Created by
Starring
Theme music composer
Opening theme
Composer(s)
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons11
No. of episodes242 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Michael Berk
  • Douglas Schwartz
  • Gregory J. Bonann
  • David Hasselhoff
Production location(s)Los Angeles County
Running time37–47 minutes
Production company(s)
Distributor
Release
Original network
Picture format4:3
Audio formatStereo
Original release
  • NBC
    September 22, 1989 (1989-09-22) – April 6, 1990 (1990-04-06)
  • Syndication
    September 23, 1991 (1991-09-23)
 –
May 14, 2001 (2001-05-14)
Chronology
Related showsBaywatch Nights
External links
Website
Pamela Anderson as C. J. Parker.

Baywatch is an American action drama television series about lifeguards who patrol the beaches of Los Angeles County, California and Hawaii, starring David Hasselhoff. It was created by Michael Berk, Douglas Schwartz, and Gregory J. Bonann, who produced the show throughout its 11 season run. The series focuses on both professional and personal challenges faced by the characters, portrayed by a large rotating ensemble cast that notably includes Pamela Anderson, Alexandra Paul, Gregory Alan Williams, Jeremy Jackson, Parker Stevenson, Billy Warlock, Erika Eleniak, David Charvet, Yasmine Bleeth, and Nicole Eggert.

The show was cancelled after its first season on NBC, but survived through syndication and later became the most-watched television show in the world, with an estimated weekly audience of 1.1 billion viewers despite consistently negative critical reviews,[3] earning it a reputation as a pop cultural phenomena and frequent source of allusion and parody.[4] The show ran in its original title and format from 1989 to 1999. From 1999 to 2001, with a setting change and large cast overhaul, it was known as Baywatch: Hawaii.

It spawned a spin-off series, Baywatch Nights, which aired for two seasons from 1995 to 1997, and a 2017 feature film adaptation.

Overview[edit]

Baywatch revolves around the work of a team of lifeguards and their interpersonal relationships, with plots usually centering on dangers related to the beach and other activities pertinent to the California (later Hawaii) beach lifestyle. Topics from earthquakes and shark attacks to serial killers serve as plot conflicts on the show. Saving people from drowning is one of the most typical situations used in the shows.

Episodes[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast airedNetwork
PilotApril 23, 1989 (1989-04-23)NBC
121September 22, 1989 (1989-09-22)April 6, 1990 (1990-04-06)
222October 5, 1991 (1991-10-05)May 23, 1992 (1992-05-23)Syndication
322September 20, 1992 (1992-09-20)May 16, 1993 (1993-05-16)
422September 25, 1993 (1993-09-25)May 21, 1994 (1994-05-21)
522October 1, 1994 (1994-10-01)May 27, 1995 (1995-05-27)
622September 30, 1995 (1995-09-30)May 18, 1996 (1996-05-18)
722September 28, 1996 (1996-09-28)May 17, 1997 (1997-05-17)
822September 27, 1997 (1997-09-27)May 23, 1998 (1998-05-23)
922September 26, 1998 (1998-09-26)May 22, 1999 (1999-05-22)
1022September 25, 1999 (1999-09-25)May 20, 2000 (2000-05-20)
1122October 7, 2000 (2000-10-07)May 19, 2001 (2001-05-19)
ReunionFebruary 28, 2003 (2003-02-28)Fox

Cast[edit]

Baywatch is noted for its large ensemble cast with various members "rotating" in-and-out of the show, similar to many long-running soap operas. By the end of the 11 season run, not a single member of the original cast was still in the cast. David Hasselhoff appeared in the most episodes (totalling 220 including the pilot), followed by Jeremy Jackson (159), Michael Newman (150), and Pamela Anderson (111).

Following the Hawaii retool, many of the series longtime cast members left the show. The only remaining cast members were David Hasselhoff, Brooke Burns, Michael Bergin, Allie Reese, and Michael Newman. Following the 10th season, Hasselhoff and Newman both left the series, leaving Bergin and Owens the only remnants of the show's original "L.A. era".

Baywatch (1989–1999)[edit]

Baywatch Hawaii (1999–2001)[edit]

Production history[edit]

Baywatch debuted on NBC in 1989, but was cancelled after only one season,[5] when it placed 73rd out of 103 shows in the seasonal ratings, and also because the production studio, GTG, (a joint venture of television station owner Gannett Company, later spun off into Tegna, and Grant Tinker, which was established only to produce the newsmagazine based on Gannett's newspaper USA Today) went out of business.[3] Due to high production costs, GTG was unable to finance the series any further.[6]

Feeling the series still had potential, David Hasselhoff, one of the principal actors, along with creators and executive producers Michael Berk, Douglas Schwartz, and Gregory J. Bonann, revived it for the first-run syndication market in 1991. Hasselhoff was given the title of executive producer for his work on bringing the show back. The series was hugely successful, especially internationally.[7][8]

The show led to a spin-off, Baywatch Nights, and three direct-to-video films: Baywatch the Movie: Forbidden Paradise, Baywatch: White Thunder at Glacier Bay, and Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding.[citation needed]

The audience was 65 percent female,[9] with its number one audience being women aged 18 to 34. Speaking in 2001, Schwartz explained that, after doing focus groups on Baywatch for about five years, they learned that the show appealed to this demographic because "most of [its] lead characters were strong, independent women who were heroic, who were saving lives, who were equal to men".[10]

Filming[edit]

Will Rogers State Beach served as the predominant beach location for Baywatch, although some scenes were filmed at Long Beach and in Malibu. Interior locations were filmed at Culver Studios.[11] After the Baywatch: Hawaii retool, the series primary filming location relocated to Honolulu.

Theme songs[edit]

  • The original NBC theme was "Save Me", performed by Peter Cetera, with Bonnie Raitt on guitar and Richard Sterban, bass singer for The Oak Ridge Boys, as one of the background vocalists. The song is from Cetera's 1988 album One More Story.
  • On some DVD releases of the first series "Save Me" was replaced with "Above the Waterline" by Kim Carnes.
  • For the syndicated series, the new theme "I'm Always Here" (written by Jimi Jamison, Cory Lerios, John D'Andrea and Joe Henry, performed by Jimi Jamison of Survivor) replaced "Save Me". An instrumental version of "I'm Always Here" was used as the ending theme of seasons 6 to 9. A different instrumental version was used as the theme for season 10 (the first season of Baywatch: Hawaii). Some parts of the lyrics of "I'm Always Here" are written on Jimi's grave.
  • When the NBC episodes were added to the Baywatch syndication package, the opening theme was changed to a shorter version of "I'm Always Here", with some images of the original NBC opening retained.
  • David Hasselhoff sang the Kevin SavigarTodd Cerney tune "Current of Love" as the ending theme of Seasons 2–4 (on Seasons 2 and 3, the version of this song has been fast and on Season 4, the version of this song has been slow). Together with Laura Branigan he sang "I Believe" as the ending theme of Season 5.
  • On the DVD edition of the second season, the original main title theme is replaced by the song "Strong Enough", performed by Evan Olson (from his album Audio).
  • The theme for season 11 (the second season of Baywatch: Hawaii) was called "Let Me Be the One" written and performed by Carlos Villalobos, Glenn Medeiros and sung by Fiji.
  • The spin-off series, Baywatch Nights theme song was performed by saxophonist Alfonzo Blackwell. "The Nights Will Never Be the Same" (Baywatch Nights Theme) was also featured on his 1996 sophomore CD release. Alfonzo Blackwell was featured with David Hasselhoff each week in the ending credits of the TV series.

Other versions of "I'm Always Here" include:

  • An instrumental version of the song appears in the episode "Battles" of the UK television programme Spaced.
  • The Swedish electronic musical group Sunblock remixed the song and released it as a single.
  • A soundalike version was used in the Hey Arnold! episode "Summer Love" over the end credits.
  • Swedish group Konditorns recorded the theme with Swedish lyrics for their album K2 (2012), titled "Jag är alltid här" which is a direct translation of the phrase "I'm always here".

David Hasselhoff also recorded a duet with Laura Branigan which was hugely successful for being broadcast as the closing track of the Baywatch TV series. The single I Believe was originally released on CD album in 1994.[12]

Baywatch: Hawaii[edit]

In 1999, with production costs rising in Los Angeles, and the syndication market shrinking, the producers sought to move the production elsewhere. They filmed a pilot and announced plans to title the show Baywatch: Down Under. However, strong local opposition from residents of Avalon, New South Wales eventually led to Pittwater Council, the local government area of which Avalon was part of, to permanently ban future production.[13][14] As an alternative to Australia, Hawaii offered the producers large financial incentives to move the show to the islands, instead, and in season 10, Baywatch: Hawaii was launched.[citation needed]

Baywatch filmed for two seasons in Hawaii, from 1999 until 2001. April Masini, a newspaper advice columnist, pitched the move to executive producer Gregory J. Bonann. The agreement mandated that addition of the subtitle, to Baywatch: Hawaii, as well as the hiring local production crew, filming on-location for at least two years, and producing 44 episodes, each at a cost of about US$870,000 (climbing up to $1.1 million), 60% of which was to be spent in Hawaii.[15][16] The series was cancelled due to poor ratings.[17]

Home media[edit]

Baywatch "Nightmare Bay"/"River of No Return" DVD
Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding, the reunion movie on DVD
  • Australia: On May 1, 2013, Shock Entertainment released seasons 1–9 on DVD.[18] They also released a complete series set on November 6, 2013, which features all nine seasons of Baywatch, both seasons of Baywatch Hawaii and both seasons of Baywatch Nights.[19]
  • France: The reunion movie Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding was translated to French language as Alerte à Malibu: Mariage à Hawaï and has been released.
  • Finland: Seasons 1–3 have been released by Future Film.
  • Germany: Seasons 1 to 11 have been released. These releases are presented exactly as they originally aired, albeit with German language credits (these are also available in the U.K. from Amazon as imports). The reunion movie Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding was translated to German language as Baywatch: Hochzeit auf Hawaii and has been released.
  • Italy: Seasons 1 and 2 have been released by Koch Media, season 5 and 6 have been released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
  • Netherlands: Season 3 has been released.
  • Sweden: Seasons 1–3 have been released.
  • United Kingdom: Seasons 1–6 have been released by Network. In 2017, to coincide with the release of the movie, Network released a DVD entitled "Best of Baywatch" which includes the two-part episodes "Nightmare Bay" and "River of No Return".
  • United States: In June 1999 a single disc DVD was released featuring two 2-part episodes from the show's original run ("Nightmare Bay" parts 1 and 2 from Season 2, and "River of No Return" parts 1 & 2 from Season 3). These episodes are absent from the U.S. box sets of their respective seasons mentioned below.

First Look Studios released the first three seasons on DVD in 2006/2007. Although the box sets are labeled "Season 1", "Season 2", etc., the sets actually feature episodes of the following season (i.e. the "Season 1" box set contains the episodes of the literal second season (1991–1992) of the show). The second and third sets were released on October 31, 2006. Each set features a disc with Season 1 episodes on it. These releases also do not contain any of the original music as it appeared when the episodes aired. They have been removed due to copyright agreements.[20] However, these releases have been discontinued and are now out of print.

In August 2018, Deadline reported that FremantleMedia is remastering the series.[21] The series was released on Amazon and Hulu in HD and Pluto TV in 2019. Due to expired licenses for much of the show's musical soundtrack, many of the shows episodes are either cut to remove songs, or re-scored and re-edited with new "soundalike" tracks.

In popular culture[edit]

The show is the subject of a running gag on Friends, where Chandler and Joey would watch Baywatch together religiously, including over the phone when Joey was living in another apartment. Among other related jokes, Chandler names their pet chicken after Yasmine Bleeth (although the bird later turns out to be male).

Many of the actors from the series have become closely associated with their roles in the series. David Hasselhoff has often referenced or satirized his role as Mitch Buchannon, notably in The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie; in which he appears in lifeguard attire similar to Mitch, runs across a beach in slow-motion, and displays superhuman swimming abilities similar Mitch's own feats of athleticism.

Babewatch is a satirical term sometimes used in connection with the series, which has been used by the humor magazine Mad and television commentators.[22] The term was also used for a series of adult films released between 1994 and 1999 in 13 parts.

Baywatch is prominently featured in the 2006 mockumentary film Borat in which the character Borat Sagdiyev (played by Sacha Baron Cohen), a Kazakh journalist with a misconstrued understanding of American customs and pop culture, becomes obsessed with Pamela Anderson after seeing her in an episode of the series (which he believes to be a documentary) and travels to America in a failed attempt to court her and later attempts to abduct her. In a deleted scene, Borat creates a pilot episode of a Kazakh remake of Baywatch entitled Sexydrownwatch, which features "I'm Always Here" and Alexandra Paul reprising her role as Stephanie.

Baywatch running[edit]

"Baywatch running" refers to the show's numerous scenes, particularly in the opening credits, of its cast members running across the beach in slow motion, usually wearing distinctive red lifeguard gear. The trope is closely associated with the show and often referenced directly in parodies.[23]

Related media[edit]

Film adaptation[edit]

The film adaptation is a comedy, written and directed by Jeremy Garelick. Garelick's previous successes include the rewrite of The Hangover.[24]

In September 2012, it was announced that Reno 911! co-creator and star Robert Ben Garant would direct the film version of Baywatch for Paramount Pictures.[25]

In October 2014, it was announced that Paramount was moving forward with its big-screen adaptation of Baywatch and has loosely attached Dwayne Johnson to the project. The studio also hired Justin Malen to rewrite and attached the comedy writing team of Sean Anders and John Morris to direct.[26][27]

In July 2015, it was announced Seth Gordon would direct with Damian Shannon and Mark Swift having written the latest script with Dwayne Johnson still attached to star.[28]

On August 10, 2015, it was announced that Zac Efron had been cast in the film. Johnson also announced that the film will be R-Rated. The report stated, "The story centers on a by-the-book and very serious lifeguard (Johnson) who is forced to team up with a young rule-flouting hothead (Efron) in order to save their beach from environmental destruction at the hands of an oil tycoon."[29][30][31] That same month, reports were saying that Kelly Brook was in contention to star in the film as C.J. Parker, with Kate Upton and Charlotte McKinney also on the shortlist, but Brook denied the rumor the following day on Instagram.[32][33][34][35] Brook later confirmed that she had read the script but was still uncertain if she would appear.[36]

On November 9, 2015, it was reported that several actresses, including Alexandra Daddario, Nina Dobrev, Ashley Benson, Alexandra Shipp, Shelley Hennig, Bianca Santos, and Denyse Tontz, were in the running for the female lead, with the possibility that some of them could join the film in different roles and other unnamed actresses could be in the running as well.[37] On November 18, 2015, Johnson confirmed Daddario (who previously worked with Johnson on San Andreas) for the role of Summer, originally played by Eggert in the TV series, and revealed the casting of C.J. and other roles would soon be announced.[38] On January 4, 2016, Johnson announced that actress and model Kelly Rohrbach was cast as C.J. for the film.[39][40][41][42] On January 11, 2016, The Hollywood Reporter reported that Priyanka Chopra was in talks to appear in the film in a villainous role. On February 16, 2016, Chopra and Johnson released a video to confirm her participation in the above-mentioned role.[43] On January 20, 2016, a release date of May 19, 2017, was announced and Ilfenesh Hadera joined the cast as Stef, the love interest of Johnson's character.[44][45] On January 27, 2016, Variety reported that Jon Bass was cast as Ronnie, described as funny, awkward and a skilled disco dancer who falls in love with C.J. at the beach.[46]

The film was released in the United States on May 25, 2017, by Paramount Pictures,[47] and grossed $177.4 million worldwide.[48]

Potential reboot series[edit]

As of August 2018, Deadline reported that FremantleMedia International were eyeing a reboot of the franchise.[21]

Baywatch: The Documentary[edit]

In 2019 it was announced that Baywatch is being revived as documentary feature film. As they explained on the Factual America Podcast, Filmmakers Matthew Felker and Brian Corso have lined up some of the show's top-billed castmembers to take a walk down memory lane for Baywatch: The Documentary and talk about their time on the show and the hours they spent in skimpy red suits.[49]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Baywatch". AllMovie. Retrieved April 16, 2020.
  2. ^ Herbert, Steven (December 25, 1990). "Baywatch: A New Wave of Popularity Overseas". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-10-15.
  3. ^ a b Carter, Bill (1995-07-03). "Media: TELEVISION; Stand aside, CNN. America's No. 1 TV export is – no scoffing, please – 'Baywatch". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-08-10.
  4. ^ Carter, Bill. "Widely derided 'Baywatch' reaches virtually every television set on Earth". baltimoresun.com. Retrieved 2020-08-31.
  5. ^ HERBERT, STEVEN (25 December 1990). "'Baywatch': A New Wave of Popularity Overseas : Television: The NBC series that drowned in low ratings gets new life in syndication. It has been sold to more than 40 nations". Articles.latimes.com. Retrieved 2016-06-12 – via LA Times.
  6. ^ Hasselhoff, David. Don't Hassel the Hoff: The Autobiography. New York: St. Martin's P, 2007. Web. 7 Nov. 2018.
  7. ^ Gritten, David (November 20, 1996). "Baywatch Has a Cow, Man, London Style". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-10-15.
  8. ^ McDougal, Dennis (November 28, 1991). "Surf's Up Again for Baywatch". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-10-15.
  9. ^ Stall, Sam; Harry, Lou; Spalding, Julia (2004). "B". The Encyclopedia of Guilty Pleasures: 1001 Things You Hate to Love. Philadelphia: Quirk Books. p. 25. ISBN 9781931686549. OCLC 57123463. Retrieved September 9, 2019.
  10. ^ "I Love 1990". I Love the 1990s. Series 1. Episode 1. August 18, 2001. 27:04 minutes in. BBC. BBC Two. Retrieved September 28, 2019.
  11. ^ "Behind the Scenes of Baywatch with Alexandra Paul".
  12. ^ Baywatch CD (Compilation, 1994) in Discogs.com
  13. ^ Huff, Richard (March 1, 1999). "Aussie Town Boos Baywatch". Sun Sentinel. Retrieved 2010-10-16.
  14. ^ "Wave of protest over Baywatch move". BBC. February 26, 1999. Retrieved 2010-10-15.
  15. ^ Ryan, Tim (March 4, 1999). "'Baywatch' May Relocate to Hawaii". Honolulu Star-Bulletin.
  16. ^ https://www.bizjournals.com/pacific/stories/2001/02/12/story2.html
  17. ^ https://apnews.com/73e669512692304fd63131541eb8201c
  18. ^ "New Release DVDs and Boxsets". ScreenPop Australia. Retrieved 12 June 2016.
  19. ^ "SCREENPOP: Great TV and Movies on BluRay and DVD". ScreenPop Australia. Archived from the original on 2013-11-13. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  20. ^ "News for Baywatch". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Archived from the original on 2007-03-13. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  21. ^ a b White, Peter. "FremantleMedia Eyes 'Baywatch' Reboot After Remastering 35MM Print Into HD". Deadline. Retrieved August 6, 2018.
  22. ^ "Surf's Up for 'Baywatch'". KFOX-TV. 1999-11-16. Archived from the original on February 3, 2009.
  23. ^ "Zac Efron & The 'Baywatch' Cast Explain Why The Iconic Slow-Mo Run Isn't As Glamorous As It Looks". Bustle. Retrieved 2020-08-31.
  24. ^ Fleming, Michael (July 6, 2009). "Garelick adding laughs to 'Baywatch'". Variety. Retrieved April 22, 2011.
  25. ^ "Exclusive: Reno 911! Co-Creator to Direct Baywatch Movie". Vulture. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  26. ^ "Paramount Moves Forward With 'Baywatch' Movie (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  27. ^ "@therock on Instagram: ""This is my beach bitch!" Rumors are true... we're making #BAYWATCH the movie. Edgy, raunchy and hopefully, funny as all. Cue slo mo…"". Instagram. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  28. ^ Kroll, Justin. "Seth Gordon to Direct Dwayne Johnson in Paramount's 'Baywatch' Movie". Variety. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  29. ^ "Zac Efron Cast In Baywatch Reboot". Comicbook.com. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  30. ^ "Dwayne Johnson on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  31. ^ "Dwayne Johnson on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  32. ^ Daniel, Welsh (August 18, 2015). "Kelly Brook For 'Baywatch' Film Role? Star Tipped To Join Zac Efron And Dwayne Johnson". Huffington Post.
  33. ^ Heath, Paul (August 18, 2015). "Kelly Brook Baywatch movie rumours: Up for Pamela Anderson role?". The Hollywood News.
  34. ^ "Kelly Brook on Instagram: "😂😂😂😂😂 The Tabloids have gone Mad Love it 👍🏼🇬🇧❤️🇺🇸"". Instagram. Archived from the original on 2016-01-05. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  35. ^ Powell, Emma (August 19, 2015). "Kelly Brook laughs off Baywatch rumours with photoshopped Pamela Anderson Instagram". Standard.
  36. ^ Jayson, Jay (December 27, 2015). "Kelly Brook Has Read For Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's Baywatch Movie". Comicbook.com.
  37. ^ Fleming, Jr., Mike (November 9, 2015). "Bevy Of Actresses Test For 'Baywatch' Lead; Dwayne Johnson & Zac Efron Star". Deadline.
  38. ^ Fleming, Mike, Jr. (November 18, 2015). "Alexandra Daddario Lands 'Baywatch' Female Lead". Deadline.
  39. ^ Miller, Michael (January 4, 2016). "Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson & Kelly Rohrbach Make Hilarious Baywatch Parody Videos Following Her Split from Leonardo DiCaprio". People.
  40. ^ "@therock on Instagram: "A pleasure welcoming @kellyrohrbach to our #BAYWATCH family for the iconic role of "CJ Parker". Yes, she's a walking smoke stack but more…"". Instagram. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  41. ^ "@therock on Instagram: "For our #BAYWATCH and the iconic role of "CJ Parker" I had to make sure @kellyrohrbach was... tough."". Instagram. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  42. ^ "@therock on Instagram: "For our #BAYWATCH and the iconic role of "CJ Parker" I had to make sure @kellyrohrbach was ridiculously sexy running in SLO-MO...."". Instagram. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  43. ^ Kit, Borys (January 11, 2016). "'Quantico' Star Priyanka Chopra in Early Talks to Join Dwayne Johnson in 'Baywatch' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter.
  44. ^ "Ilfenesh Hadera joins Baywatch cast as Dwayne Johnson's love interest | EW.com". www.ew.com. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  45. ^ "'Terminator 2' Pulled From Schedule, 'Baywatch' Release Date Set". TheWrap. Retrieved 2016-01-21.
  46. ^ McNary, Dave (January 27, 2016). "Dwayne Johnson's 'Baywatch' Movie Casts Jon Bass". Variety.
  47. ^ "Baywatch - Movie Trailer #2 [Starring The Rock]". VannDigital. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
  48. ^ https://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=baywatch.htm
  49. ^ "Factual America: Episode 17: Baywatch: The American Dream". June 6, 2020.

External links[edit]