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Netflix stakes out ‘Spy Kids’ TV series from Robert Rodriguez

More pint-sized espionage on the way with "a new family of spies."

By Benjamin Bullard
Spy Kids

The kids who saved the day in the original early-2000s Spy Kids may be spy adults now, but Netflix has its eyes on a new generation of pint-sized PIs who can pull their parents (or other grown-ups) out of a pickle. A reimagining of the adventure-comedy franchise is reportedly in the works for TV, with original creator Robert Rodriguez back behind the camera for a new espionage entry aimed at reviving the series.

Deadline reports that Rodriguez has joined forces with Netflix to introduce “a new family of spies” in a small-screen Spy Kids project — one first hinted at last year — that he’ll write and direct. Rodriguez created the hit film franchise and debuted the original Spy Kids in 2001. Over the ensuing decade, the series featured four movie installments, all with Rodriguez at the directing helm.

Robert Rodriguez

Fans of a certain age grew up with Spy Kids and its globetrotting, family-themed tales of children who end up bailing their top-secret parents out of trouble with evil technocrat kidnappers and other over-the-top threats to global peace. The cast was a big-ticket part of the series’ success, featuring Antonio Banderas and Carla Gugino as the deep-cover mom and dad leaders of the Cortez family, with kids Carmen and Juni (Alexa Vega and Daryl Sabara) inheriting plenty of the family gift for top-level stealth.

There’s no word on whether any of the original cast might return for the new project, though its billing as a reimagining of the Spy Kids franchise (not to mention the whole “new family of spies” tease) suggests that fresh faces in the leading roles are likely. Rodriguez reportedly is developing the new project in conjunction with Skydance Media and Netflix, partnering with Spy Kids franchise owner Spyglass Media.

The first four Spy Kids movies spanned the decade from 2001 to 2011 and took in a combined $550 million at the global box office. Rodriguez (Desperado, Sin City, Alita Battle Angel) directed them all, including the original Spy Kids (2001), Spy Kids 2: The Island Of Lost Dreams (2002), Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over (2003), and Spy Kids 4: All the Time in the World (2011). There’s no premiere date set for the new Sky Kids installment, which marks Rodriguez' second family-focused project at Netflix following 2020’s We Can Be Heroes.