I decided to "elevate" Mike's comment question to a blog post since it's a good one and will let me rant and rave more! Also, since it's not about a set photo as usual, here is a picture of Tom I found in a drawer at McClain's that sold off everything last weekend at about .15 cents on the dollar. A dealer even came from the mainland to fill a container because things went so cheaply.
Anyway, there would be no reason to contact me about the look of any of the sets. Any decent Hollywood Art Director or Set Designer would be able to pull the basic design (interior and exterior) of any of the sets that were seen on Magnum. Screen grabs, blow ups, and production stills taken by the studio during filming would all provide more than enough information to re-create as much as they want of the show's original settings. If they want to do that at all.
As to the expense of new, original vs. recreation, it might cost a bit more having new sets designed as a Production Designer and staff would have to be employed, but not significantly more than another team going over hours of DVD's looking for set views and drawing plans.
And now a few words from the blogmeister............(ok, more than a few).......
When a producer or studio purchases the rights to a property such as "Fantasy Island" or "Hawaii Five-0," they aren't necessarily buying any obligation to re-create a museum replica of the original. Obviously there is some obligation to have 5-0 take place in Hawaii instead of Maine and "Fantasy Island" not take place on Fire Island, but given time and societal changes that have happened in the 20-30 years since these TV shows first aired and the current film tastes (car explosions, f-word, computer effects, and MTV editing, etc.), one would assume a recreation would not be practical if you wanted to make your $500 million opening weekend at the multiplex.
I mention those 2 shows because I did do a pilot for "Hawaii 5-0" in 1997 and I was the decorator for the pilot and (only) 13 episodes of the "new" "Fantasy Island" with Malcom McDowell in 1998. Granted these were TV to TV and not TV to film revivals, but they will serve as examples.
With 5-0, the only original cast member involved was James McArthur. Ever young at heart, he looked more like Albert Einstein with a mop of gray hair than the clean-cut, subservient Danno of the original series. One version of the MANY scripts we went through had McGarret in his deathbed filmed from the rear, passing the torch to Gary Busey and Russel Wong. (sniff) Originally the police office sets were going to be super-modern, futuristic on a high floor of the recently created First Hawaiian Bank tower downtown. When they finally found a director for the pilot, they decided ultimately on a more retro look built inside the old post office building--ironically across the street from the now revered Iolani Palace which was just another public building when it was the TV home of the fictional 5-0 state police. After that it was just another cops and robbers show that was so bad (mainly because of you-know-who) that it never aired at all.
The other revival show, "Fantasy Island," was a bit closer to the original series. There was still the plane that landed (an amazing feat on the fish pond at Kualoa Ranch!), a bell tower, the mysterious Mr. Roark (this time in Armani suits), a beautiful tropical hotel, but no annoying "boss, boss, deplane, deplane" person (although we did have a portrait of him in the hotel lobby in the pilot). The show was produced by 2 famous Hollywood producers ("the 2 Barrys"), Sony Studio, and had 3 famous stars as regulars.
Problem #1 - it was aimed at a "young and trendy" audience, yet it aired on Saturday night. Young and trendy audiences are not at home on Saturday nights--but did anyone ask me that? The now older, not-so-trendy original watchers didn't like the new version and watched something else.
#2 - there were 2-3 "fantasies" per episode and most of them were "bummer" fantasies. Unlike the original where they fulfilled positive dreams and aspirations, one woman on ours asked for "ultimate knowledge" and promptly discovered her sister was sleeping with her husband. Bummer. A REALLY strange fantasy (on the kinky side) was this woman fighting in an all woman's army unit in WWII against other all woman Japanese soldiers. The producers actually thought the USMC here was going to help them with equipment! Can you imagine the military actually wanted to read the script ahead of time?! (duh) I was the one who got the call from some general on the mainland since I was relying on all their tents and equipment for the battleground set. Basically he said, "Are you out of your mind?" So, big surprise, no military help. I saved the day (again) by using this theme party company that did "Mash" parties with vodka in the IV bottles for their party equipment. I know, wrong era, but no more absurd than the women to women combat troupes were. That might even have its own series potential?! General Mylie Cyrus? Maybe not.
So, moving along, what I am getting at finally, is that there is no reason to think that there would be a re-creation of what we all lovingly remember (some better than others) of the original Magnum series. I would assume that they would build all interiors on sound stages in L.A. and could even do the exteriors in Mexico or Australia where it is cheaper to film. I would hope the Thomas Magnum character would at least have a mustache and wear a baseball cap (and not shave his head and wear an earing), but you can be sure he won't be wearing his former jogging shorts! I read somewhere that Tom Selleck had said he hadn't been approached at all about the possible film. And why would they any more than they would contact anyone who worked on the original series? Maybe Tom playing Russell Crowe's father? The main ticket buying demographic today did not watch Magnum in the 1980's. They were born in the 1980's. Hey, I don't make this stuff up!
I guess if a picture is worth a thousand words, I'd better stick to photos.