In 2013, A&E will debut Bates Motel, a prequel inspired by Psycho that tells the story of Norma (Vera Farmiga) and Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore). It comes from Lost executive producer Carlton Cuse and looks to have a bit of Twin Peaks inside of it.
The production has released a teaser that also features some of the cast and crew speaking to their vision. It’s all a bit too obvious on the marketing side, but it’s not hard to imagine this being a freaky, scary exploration of a life that led to a delusional killer.
And why does this look like a movie, while everything from Hitchcock looked like it was made for TV?
Obviously there’s a natural aversive response to anything that takes a classic and “updates” it by shoving it into a modern setting, but there are a lot of reasons here to expect something dark and joyous. The talent involved speaks volumes, but there’s also the benefit of expanding the story to include a calm, dangerous small town with secrets to hide. Yes, it’ll be interesting to see what created Norman Bates, but it looks like it’ll be more interesting to view the world around him as his mind crumbles.
Hopefully Bates Motel will deliver.