Just when you thought the thongs were gone for good, Baywatch is coming back from the television graveyard thanks, aptly enough, to the network that brought us Temptation Island.
Fox has green-lighted Baywatch Blast, a two-hour TV movie that will reunite many of the show's original stars with some of its most recent cast members from its last incarnation, Baywatch Hawaii, which was canceled earlier this year.
A who's who of former Baywatch hard bodies, all of whom got their start on the show, will be hitting the beach for the reunion flick, including David Hasselhoff, Donna D'Errico, Carmen Electra, Gena Lee Nolin, Alexandra Paul,
Nicole Eggert, Yasmine Bleeth and Traci Bingham. Also aboard are former Baywatch Hawaii lifeguards Michael Bergin, Jason Brooks and Stacey Kamano.
But Fox has got some 'splaining to do: First thing we want to know is how they're going to bring Hasselhoff's Mitch Buchannon back to life.
As any self-respecting Baywatch fan knows, the hairy-chested lead lifeguard was blown to bits in last year's season-ending episode of Baywatch Hawaii.
While the writers work out the details of resurrecting the dearly departed, the producers are still trying to land the most famous lifeguard of them all, Pamela Anderson. The actress, who traded in her red swimsuit to star in her own syndicated series, V.I.P., has yet to confirm whether she'll be getting jiggly with it. Another noted absentee is Parker Stevenson, who costarred on series in its formative years.
Baywatch premiered on NBC in 1989, starring Hasselhoff as the leaders of a crack team of barely clothed Malibu-based lifesavers (Santa Monica Bay was the body of water they were all watching so well). So-so ratings and blistering reviews led NBC to axe the series. However, Hasselhoff and crew quickly locked up a syndication deal. The show got sexier and the ratings went through the roof.
The show launched the pinup careers of Anderson, Electra, Bleeth and D'Errico, spawned a short-lived spinoff, Baywatch Nights, and inspired a slew of copycat shows.
At its peak, the show aired in more than 140 countries and producers claimed it was the most popular show in the world.
Faced with soaring production costs and dwindling ratings, Baywatch packed up the bikinis in 1999 and relocated from California to Hawaii. The show lasted another two seasons before the lifeguards finally hung up their trunks.
Filming on the $5.5 million telefilm is slated to begin in October in Oahu and will wrap in Los Angeles. Baywatch Blast is set to hit airwaves during February sweeps.