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Daughter of 'Gilligan's Island's' Ginger: Make Professor gay in reboot

Dec. 19, 2013 at 9:45 AM ET

Caprice Crane says her mom Tina Louise is still out there, acting and "being awesome."
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Caprice Crane says her mom Tina Louise is still out there, acting and "being awesome."

"Gilligan's Island" is set for a big screen voyage, and that makes casting — and plot — super-hot topics. So how about Jennifer Lawrence as bombshell Ginger? What about a gay Professor? Both are suggestions shared with TODAY by Caprice Crane, the daughter of Tina Louise, the actress who played Ginger.

"My mom was constantly coming on to the Professor on the show, and he was never into it," said Crane, a writer based in Los Angeles. "So the Professor could be the gay one. It would explain a lot. It would be fun if they shake it up, make it worthy of today's times."

Crane wasn't born until after "Gilligan's" ended, but she knows that Ginger was one of the show's most beloved characters, and is hoping someone with real star power will take on the role her mom created. (Josh Gad is already attached, though his part is not yet known.)

"They're going to have their work cut out for them finding someone who is as awesome and gorgeous and funny as my mom," she said. But after being told of TODAY's survey (in which readers preferred "Mad Men's" Christina Hendricks to play Ginger), she had her own favorite.

"I'm in love with Jennifer Lawrence," she gushed. "She's so fresh and charming and I love her ideas. The last go-around when this was being discussed, Beyoncé was suggested — and I think that would be a good idea. But Christina Hendricks is the obvious physical choice."

Neither Louise — who is still working as an actress — nor Crane are involved with the feature film, which isn't too surprising: Though Crane is tactful in what she says about the series itself, there was acrimony over paying the actors. The show, created by Sherwood Schwartz (who also created "The Brady Bunch"), started in the days before actors were paid residuals every time one of their shows re-ran, so none of the actors ever benefited from the show's longevity.

"No one knew how popular shows were to become and no one knew there would be so many reruns," she said. "The cast tried to be treated fairly later on, and get those rules backdated, but it was up to the Schwartzes and both 'The Brady Bunch' and 'Gilligan's Island' (casts) kind of got screwed because they wouldn't do it. Luckily for every other actor in the world, those rules changed. But it's unfortunate."

Still, she says her mom has a "soft spot for the joy the show brought other people — anything that brings that much happiness to that many people is good."

A reboot or remake idea pops up every few years or so, said Crane, but this time having an actor such as Gad on board may actually give the project legs. 

"I hope they get to do what they want," she said. "Part of me thinks I don't know why everybody has to remake everything, but part of me thinks it's great, give it a fresh twist and make it fantastic."

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