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Saved By The Bell's Elizabeth Berkley On Joining Lily-Rose Depp's New HBO Show And Wanting To Reteam With Mark-Paul Gosseallar

By Nick Venable,


One of the biggest joys for yours truly at the latest ‘90s Con in Hartford, CT was the panel lovingly focused on Saved by the Bell , with Elizabeth Berkley, Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Mario Lopez as the stellar trio of guests. And while much of the panel (and the event at large) was dedicated to looking back at the decade in question, the SBTB squad took a few minutes to talk about their current and future projects. Which sadly don’t include Season 3 of the superb Saved by the Bell revival , which was maddeningly canceled last year by Peacock.

Up next for Elizabeth Berkley is the HBO drama The Idol which has already made the controversy rounds this year over sexed-up content claims . That might come as quite a shock to longtime fans of the actress, who counts a Melissa & Joey appearance and a Hallmark Christmas movie among her last handful of acting roles. Sure, she’s got Showgirls on her resume, but she already poked fun at that within Saved by the Bell itself. In any case, here’s what she had to say about joining the new show from Johnny Depp’s daughter Lily-Rose Depp and the Guiness World Record-breaking musician The Weeknd.

So there's a few things that I've set up, but I will be excited to talk to you about it as it becomes more real. And then I completed a new show that The Weeknd and Lily-Rose Depp are also starring in that is done by the people who do Euphoria, Sam Levinson. So that's interesting. It's pretty gritty, dark, a little different than this. But yeah, that's called The Idol on HBO, and some other things are coming up.

Considering The Idol still doesn’t have a premiere date locked down, having been largely revamped from the ground up when Euphoria ’s Sam Levinson took over directing duties from Amy Seimetz, it’s understandable that Elizabeth Berkley couldn’t say too much about what viewers can expect to see beyond what the teasers have already shown us. Speaking of, here’s the latest one that HBO put out into the world, though I couldn’t spot the Saved by the Bell vet in there anywhere.

For now, we’ll just have to be patient while waiting to see what role Berkley took on for her first big HBO role — she was in a multi-episode stint for Showtime’s The L Word — while coming up with our own theories about just how gritty the new project will be compared to Bayside’s high school silliness.

Elizabeth Berkley On Working With Mark-Paul Gosselaar Again

It was actually before she brought up The Idol when Elizabeth Berkley took a second to reflect on and regret Saved by the Bell not returning for another season. More specifically, she turned to former co-star Mark-Paul Gosselaar to pointedly compliment him and voice her wishes for them to team up again at some point. Here’s how she put it:

I was really inspired and, dare I say, excited about being one of the producers on Saved by the Bell's reboot. Our amazing director here, Mark, Paul, did an incredible episode which - [to Gosselaar] I can't wait to be directed by you again. It was one of my favorites, I have to tell you. He's an incredible director. I felt so taken care of. . . . And because of the shorthand, like, you could give me a direction, and we would just drop it. It was one of my favorite experiences with you creatively. I just wanted to point that out.

It was the Season 2 installment “The Gift,” in which Jessie talked to Kelly about applying to medical school regardless of anyone else’s thoughts, that Mark-Paul Gosselaar served as a director for Peacock’s Saved by the Bell . Prior to that, he’d only directed two other TV episodes — one episode of Franklin & Bash and one of Murder in the First — so it might be a bit before the next one comes around, and it’ll take some very special planning for Berkley to be involved. But that doesn’t mean we can’t hope for it just as much as she is. And hey, if Franklin himself Breckin Meyer wanted to get involved as well, the more the merrier!

MPG echoed her thoughts about it being a really great experience, while also restating how disappointed he was that the show was canceled. As great as it is that both seasons can be streamed over and over again with a Peacock subscription , I just want to spend more time with Zack, Jessie and all of the new characters like Daisy and Lexi.

Everybody can get so excited, so excited, and mayyyybe so scared for the upcoming debut of The Idol when it eventually hits the 2023 TV premiere schedule .

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