Walker, Texas Ranger is set to serve up more martial arts-fueled, Lone Star state justice in a new TV version of the beloved Chuck Norris action series.
Supernatural star Jared Padalecki is set to executive produce and succeed Norris in the upcoming show Walker, described as a "straight reboot" in the same vein as the recent CBS reboots Magnum PI and MacGyver.
Deadline broke the news and has further details on the premise:
Like the original series, created by Albert S. Ruddy & Leslie Greif, the reboot, in which Walker is getting a female partner, will explore morality, family, and rediscovering our lost common ground.
At the center of the series is Cordell Walker (Padalecki), a man finding his way back to his family while investigating crime in the state’s most elite unit. Our broken widower and father of two returns home to Austin after being undercover for two years for a high profile case – only to discover that there’s even more work to be done at home.
In a nod to the original series, Walker and his new partner — one of the only women in Texas Rangers’ history — are the modern day heroes our world needs, following their own moral code to fight for what’s right, regardless of the rules.
Both CBS, the original home of Walker, Texas Ranger and current home of Supernatural, and CBS Television Studios are reportedly shopping Walker. Anne Fricke (Valor) is attached as a writer and executive producer alongside Dan Lin (Lethal Weapon) and Dan Spilo (Sunnyside).
Walker, Texas Ranger left behind something of a rich pop culture legacy after the final episode aired in 2001. Late Night With Conan O'Brien host Conan O'Brien had a long-running gag in which he'd pull a lever to show the audience a random clip of Norris' cowboy-hatted character kicking ass.
The 2006 NASCAR comedy Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby also included a winking reference to the show: The sons of star Will Ferrell's boneheaded race car driver Ricky Bobby were, after all, named "Walker" and "Texas Ranger."
Walker, Texas Ranger also spawned a made-for-TV movie based on the series starring Norris dubbed Walker, Texas Ranger: Trial by Fire that aired in 2005. It currently (and perhaps surprisingly) holds a 63 percent audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.
One thing's for sure: Padalecki has some seriously big boots to fill in taking on one of Norris' most beloved and badass roles.