Will Ferrell Lands "Lost"

by Joal Ryan
Apr 25, 2005, 4:15 PM PT

Will Ferrell's Rick Marshall 'fro has landed its dream part.

The tightly coiled hair of the Saturday Night Live alum will honor its roots as Rick Marshall's tightly coiled hair in a big-screen version of the 1970s dinosaur series, Land of the Lost.

The rest of Ferrell will appear in the film, as well.

Ferrell's Anchorman cohort Adam McKay will direct; Chris Henchy, Brooke Shields' scribe of a husband, and Dennis McNicholas will supply the screenplay.

Universal Pictures, which is attempting the TV-to-movie trick with The Six Million Dollar Man, is backing the production.

Land of the Lost was the longest-running children's series from 1970s TV kingpins Sid and Marty Krofft, who also exposed young minds to H.R. Pufnstuf, Sigmund and the Sea Monsters, Lidsville and more.

Forty-three first-run episodes of Land of the Lost appeared on NBC from 1974-76. The show remained a fixture on Saturday-morning network television through the 1980s. A series update, also titled Land of the Lost, lasted 26 episodes on ABC from 1991-92.

The movie, like fans of the show before them, will ignore the latter production, which focused on the exploits of the Porter clan, and glorify the original, which focused on the exploits of the Marshall clan.

As the original series explained in song, ranger Rick Marshall (Spencer Milligan) and children, Will (Wesley) and Holly (Kathy Coleman), were on a routine rafting expedition when an earthquake shook them all the way from the 1970s to a prehistoric world. Two seasons later, Rick went missing like Wesley's last name. As luck would have it, Rick's brother, Jack (Planet of the Apes TV astronaut Ron Harper), fell into the same time portal and became the surrogate father to Will and Holly.

In addition to the Marshalls, the lost land was populated by projection-screen dinosaurs, evil upright reptiles (the Sleestaks) and a friendly, hairy caveboy (Cha-Ka).

There was no word on when the busy Ferrell will have time to get Lost.

The Elf giant has starring roles in three 2005 films: the sports comedy Kicking & Screaming (opening May 13); the romantic comedy Bewitched, a new twist on yet another old TV series (due June 24); and the musical comedy The Producers (due Dec. 23).

The Producers is currently in production. When Ferrell's done with that, he and McKay can move onto Talladega Nights, a stock-car comedy they're lined up to make.

If for some reason Ferrell (and his hair) are unavailable for Land of the Lost, Uncle Jack is likely willing to fall down the time portal again.

Any other children of the 70's here who remember the original Land of the Lost? I watched it every morning, well into high school. The show was SO campy - remember the Sleestaks!? Cha-ka!? Even the opening credits were great. I hope they don't try to make this a serious pic, although with Will Ferrell starring, campy is probably their best bet. I'll definitely be in line for this one. Anyone else?