Peter Berg is still talking about making another Friday Night Lights movie, even as he’s ostensibly promoting his new TV show, Prime Suspect. “We’re writing a script,” Berg told reporters at TCAs. “We’re very serious about trying to do it.” Berg says that the film “would pick up where the finale left off” and focus on Coach, Mrs. Coach, and some old and new characters. This is a bad idea! For many reasons. [FNL spoilers from here on out.]
If the show picks up where the finale left off, doesn’t that mean the film will be set in Philadelphia? Is it really Friday Night Lights if it’s not in Texas? One thing FNL did incredibly well was avoid the Very Special Episodes; there were no “we all got locked in a room together” high jinks or off-the-reservation episodes that broke with the tone and overall story of show. But either the movie will be in Pennsylvania — not the same as the show! — or there will be some crummy conceit that forces the Taylors to head back to the Lone Star State, which again, is not the same as the show.
Let’s not forget that the series had a perfect ending. Would it have been nice to see Landry one more time, or have a scene with him and Matt together one more time? Certainly. What if someone acknowledged Santiago’s previous existence? That would have been okay, too. And after all that time with Epyk in the final season, it would have been nice to have had some closure on her story line. But we all know that’s not what the movie would be about. Two hours isn’t enough screen time for a Friday Night Lights character to really take shape, and all the major characters got a proper sendoff.
Peter Berg, go make Prime Suspect good! Put all those emotional truths and realistic behaviors into that show! Friday Night Lights is a national treasure, a fantastic achievement, and a beautiful and haunting exploration of American culture. But it’s also over.