Noah Wyle Says There Was An Effort To Revive ‘ER’ Before He & John Wells Moved Ahead With ‘The Pitt’

We could have gone back to County General!

In an interview with Steve Kmetko on his Still Here Hollywood Podcast, Noah Wyle revealed there was talk in 2020 about reviving ER, Warner Bros. hit medical drama that aired from 1994 to 2009 on NBC.

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“That’s kind of the road we had started down,” Wyle, who is best known for playing Dr. John Carter in ER, told Kmetko. “I was getting all this mail from first responders and I had this desire to pivot the compliments to John Wells, so I emailed him and I said, ‘Hey, I’m getting all this lovely mail from people that are thanking us for keeping them entertained, or inspired them to go into the careers that they’re in in the first place, and I just have to say thank you. Except for my children, [ER] is probably the best thing I’ve ever done with my life, and I just want to say thanks.’ Then I went on and I said, ‘I know you don’t want to reboot the show. I don’t either. I thought it was very smart not to franchise and dilute what we did… but if you’ve ever wanted to do something much smaller, and much more contained — more of a character piece catching up to an old character and just finding out how they feel about what’s happening right now in healthcare, and use them as a jeremiad opportunity to say what you want — I would vote for that. I’d be on board for that.’”

Wells and Wyle ended up recruiting a couple of old ER writers to bring the reboot to fruition but issues with the estate of ER creator Michael Crichton made it a non-starter, sadly.

Instead, Wells pivoted to The Pitt that would star Wyle while R. Scott Gemmill (NCIS: Los Angeles, ER) wouldwill serve as showrunner of the series. The project, which earned a 15-episode, straight to series pickup from Max marks a reunion for Wyle, Gemmill and Wells, who all worked together on ER.

The Pitt is a realistic examination of the challenges facing healthcare workers in today’s America as seen through the lens of the frontline heroes working in a modern-day hospital in Pittsburgh.

“It was a desire to put the spotlight back on to people that are on the frontlines, who have been taking care of us for the last five years without a break,” Wyle told Kmetko. “They’re tired, they’re burned out and they’re overwhelmed — and in a lot of cases, they’re being abused. They’re heroes, and I wanted to do something that reflected that again.”

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