Believe it or not, many of our favorite television shows are actually remakes of existing ones! In honor of the debut of the ABC romantic comedy series "The Baker and the Beauty" on April 1, 2020 — an adaptation of the Israeli series "Beauty and the Baker" — Wonderwall.com is taking a look at more TV shows that started abroad and got an American remake… Set in Miami, "The Baker and the Beauty" follows the life of Daniel Garcia (Victor Rasuk), a young Cuban man who works at his family's bakery. After breaking up with his girlfriend, Daniel meets international fashion model Noa Hamilton (Nathalie Kelley) and the two quickly fall for each other in spite of their disparate lifestyles. The original version of the series was one of the highest rated scripted series to ever debut in Israel. Keep reading for more foreign shows that got a U.S. remake…
While we've come to love the employees at Dunder Mifflin in Scranton, Pennsylvania, they weren't the first paper company staffers to captivate viewers' hearts. The American version of "The Office" on NBC starring Steve Carell as regional manager Michael Scott was actually an adaptation of a BBC 2 series of the same name that was created, written and directed by Ricky Gervais (who also starred on the show as David Brent, head of the Wernham Hogg paper company's Slough branch) and Stephen Merchant. The original U.K. version ran for two seasons from 2001 to 2003 while the American adaptation ran for nine seasons from 2005 to 2013. The U.K. and U.S. paper company worlds once collided: On the NBC version's seventh season, Michael and David actually meet!
The wildly popular NBC singing competition show "The Voice" is actually an adaptation of the Dutch singing competition "The Voice of Holland." Like the original, the U.S. version of "The Voice" follows the same format — from the blind auditions and battle rounds to the knockouts, live shows and celebrity coaches. "The Voice of Holland" premiered in 2010 while the American remake made its debut just one year later in 2011. The United States isn't the only country to remake the hit Dutch reality show either — Argentina, Australia, Belgium, China, Germany, Indonesia, Israel and dozens more countries have also launched their own adaptations.
"Euphoria," the Sam Levinson-created series that has been praised for its unrelenting portrayal of adolescence, is loosely based on the Israeli miniseries of the same name. The original version of "Euphoria" debuted in 2012 and ran for one 10-episode season, while the U.S. version, which debuted on HBO in 2010, received critical acclaim and is set to premiere its second season sometime in 2020. The American adaptation — which follows a group of high school students as they navigate drugs, trauma, relationships and identity — stars Zendaya as Rue, a 17-year-old drug addict who struggles to understand her place in the world. Maude Apatow, Jacob Elordi, Barbie Ferreira and Alexa Demie also star in the American remake.
"Veep" is a political satire series created by Armando Iannucci that's an adaptation of his British sitcom "The Thick of It." While "The Thick of It" gave a satirical depiction of the mechanics behind the British government, "Veep" follows Vice President of the United States Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) and her team as they navigate the day-to-day complexities of American politics. The U.S. adaptation ran from 2012 to 2019 while the U.K. original aired for four seasons from 2005 to 2012. Julia won six consecutive best lead actress in a comedy Emmys for her performance on "Veep."
Adapted from Paul Abbott's British dark comedy series of the same name, "Shameless" follows the dysfunctional, impoverished misadventures of alcoholic father Frank Gallagher (William H. Macy) and his six children. The American adaptation, which premiered in 2011 with Emmy Rossum in a lead role, is set on the South Side of Chicago. The U.K. original, which was set in Manchester and focused primarily on the British working class, aired for 11 seasons from 2004 to 2013. The U.S. remake's 11th and final season is set to premiere sometime in 2020.
The CBS reality game show "Big Brother" is based on the Dutch television series of the same name that debuted in 1997. The U.S. remake premiered in July 2000 and is the second-longest running adaptation of the "Big Brother" franchises, just behind the Spanish version. The first season of the U.S. adaptation followed the original Dutch format of the series, though due to negative reviews from both critics and viewers, CBS made notable changes to the American format in its second season. From the weekly Head of Household and Power of Veto competitions to the infamous Diary Room interviews, "Big Brother" U.S. quickly garnered a cult following. Julie Chen-Moonves has hosted every season of the American remake.
Based on the British sitcom "Man About the House," the ABC sitcom "Three's Company" premiered on March 1977 and ran for eight seasons until September 1984. The American remake starred John Ritter, Suzanne Somers and Joyce DeWitt as three roommates who live together in an apartment in Santa Monica, California. The series followed the day-to-day shenanigans of this trio and explored their social lives, financial woes and relationships with each other. "Man About the House" shared the same premise, only the three roommates resided in a London flat. The U.K. original, which was considered daring during its time for depicting a man living platonically with two women, aired for six seasons from August 1973 to April 1976.
Based on the Israeli series "Prisoners of War," "Homeland" is an American thriller series that premiered on Showtime in 2011. Its eighth and final season wraps in April 2020. The series begins by telling the story of Carrie Mathison, a bipolar C.I.A. agent who becomes convinced that U.S. Marine Corps Scout Sniper Nicholas Brody was held captive by al-Qaeda and is plotting a threat against the United States. "Prisoners of War," which was created by Israeli screenwriter Gideon Raff and ran for two seasons from 2010 to 2012, won the 2010 Israeli Academy Award for Television for best drama series.
America Ferrera wasn't the first actress to play Betty! "Ugly Betty," which ran for four seasons from 2006 to 2010 on ABC, was based on Fernando Gaitán's Colombian telenovela "Yo soy Betty, la fea." Due to the widespread popularity of the original version, the telenovela was adapted in many countries. The American remake follows Betty Suarez, a journalist who, in spite of her poor sense of style, lands a job at an elite fashion publication. The original, which ran for two seasons from 1999 to 2001, was the first telenovela to have been adapted worldwide and is considered to be the most famous Latin telenovela in history.
"Gracepoint," which was created by Chris Chibnall, is the American remake of his U.K. crime drama series "Broadchurch." Both the original and the adaptation star Scottish actor David Tennant as a detective who explores the mysterious murder of a young boy in a small, unsuspecting coastal town. While "Broadchurch" ran for three seasons from 2013 to 2017, "Gracepoint" was a limited series that aired a total of 10 episodes in late 2014 on FOX.
Since originating in the U.K. in 1990, "MasterChef" has been adapted in more than 40 countries around the world. Across the globe, the "MasterChef" adaptations have followed the same premise as the original: Home chefs are given the opportunity to compete against one another in a variety of challenges in hopes of winning the MasterChef trophy and a large cash prize. The American remake in particular, which debuted on FOX in 2010, has featured esteemed chefs and restaurateurs such as Gordon Ramsay, Joe Bastianich and Aarón Sanchez (pictured here) as judges. Milk Bar founder Christina Tosi and chef Graham Elliot have also appeared on previous seasons.
Based on the BAFTA Award-nominated reality television series of the same name, the American remake of "What Not to Wear" premiered in 2003 and ran for 10 seasons until 2013, while the U.K. original ran for seven seasons from 2001 to 2007. Both versions focused on revamping the wardrobes of nominees in need of fashion help. Similar to the U.K.'s version, which was hosted by Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine, the U.S. version brought style consultants Stacy London and Clinton Kelly (pictured) to widespread fame.
The political thriller series "House of Cards" was an adaptation of the 1990 BBC miniseries of the same name, which is based on the novel by Michael Dobbs. The American version, which ran from 2013 to 2018, told the story of Democratic congressman Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) and his headstrong wife Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) who plot to gain power after he's passed over as secretary of state. The British original, which only ran for four episodes, took place after Margaret Thatcher's time as Britain's prime minister. After Kevin was accused of sexual misconduct, the American adaptation's final season instead told the story of freshly inaugurated Democratic President Claire Wright.
While "Shark Tank" has become a hit reality television series in the U.S., the ABC show isn't the first of its kind. The series, which premiered in 2009, is the American franchise of the Dragons' Den format of reality television in which entrepreneurs pitch their innovative business concepts to a panel of investors in hopes of making a deal with them. The reality series that originated this format was "Tigers of Money," a Japanese business reality show that premiered in 2001. The American "Shark Tank" investors have consisted of successful businesspeople including Kevin O'Leary, Barbara Corcoran, Daymond John, Robert Herjavec, Mark Cuban and Lori Greiner.
While the American adaptation only made its debut in 2020, it's quickly gone on to become a must-watch for many reality television fanatics! "The Circle" originated in the U.K. in 2018 and, like the U.S. version, which airs on Netflix, it features contestants who reside in different apartments in the same complex who can only communicate with one another through a social media app called The Circle. Players are given the opportunity to craft whatever personas they desire — they can choose to be themselves or can opt to catfish fellow competitors — in hopes of being the sole winner of a cash prize. As of March 2020, Brazil, France and the United States had launched their own remakes of the British reality competition series.
"Mistresses" was an American adaptation of the U.K. drama series of the same name. The U.S. adaptation ran for four seasons from 2013 to 2016 while the British original ran for just two seasons from 2008 to 2010. Both versions followed the lives of four friends and the secretive, complex nature of their illicit affairs with married men. Alyssa Milano, Rochelle Aytes, Yunjin Kim and Jes Macallan starred in the American remake.