We have accumulated a bit of a backlog of news lately that we will consolidate into this Slate report. As these concepts develop we will give them their own category, but for now, we just want to get the facts out to our fellow HBO followers.
- Bad Robot Productions Eyes GLARE
The highly sought after Spanish writer Javier Gullón (pictured) has been commissioned by J. J. Abrams and Bad Robot Productions to pen an original work for HBO. It is called GLARE and is labeled a sci-fi odyssey exploring the colonization of another planet. It is an original idea by Gullón and we can lay odds if you want that the planet he takes us to isn’t Mars, but some more far-flung and exotic planet with dangers and mysteries of its own.
According to our source, Gullón, who has multiple produced features overseas, drew Hollywood attention recently with his dramatic thriller spec script “478,” which was made with Arnold Schwarzenegger starring and E/F/O, Protozoa and Peter Dealbert producing for release next year. Gullón recently adapted the novel The Dark Side, a sci-fi noir set on the moon, for 20th Century Fox with Steve Zaillian producing, which is currently out to directors. He also penned Denis Villeneuve’s Enemy. He will not only craft GLARE’s story put will serve as executive producer alongside Abrams and Ben Stephenson of Warner Bros. Of course, this project has HBO’s attention because Bad Robot is also behind HBO’s new hit WESTWORLD. We will see what develops.
- An Adam McKay Drama Pilot SUCCESSION Underway
We reported back in June that Adam McKay (pictured), of such work as The Big Short and HBO’s WESTBOUND & DOWN, was shaping up a drama pilot for the channel entitled SUCCESSION. It is the story of the Roy family. This family is a giant global media force to be reckoned with despite all their internal and personal problems it has. The work has now put to casting the pilot pitch and here are the details.
Brian Cox (DEADWOOD’s Jack Langrishe) will play Logan Roy, the tough, powerful, and aging patriarch of the Roy family and head of a family-controlled international media conglomerate. Jeremy Strong (Masters of Sex) plays Kendall Roy, eldest son from Logan’s second marriage, currently a Division President at the family firm and the heir apparent. Kieran Culkin (TV’s Fargo) takes the role of Roman Roy, Logan’s outspoken, fun-loving son and Kendall’s younger brother. Though still on the board of directors at the firm, he no longer works there.
Also cast are Sarah Snook (Steve Jobs), Nicholas Braun (How To Be Single) and Matthew Macfadyen (Ripper Street). Snook is Shiv (Siobhan) Roy, Logan’s only daughter and younger sister to Kendall and Roman. Like Roman, she sits on the board of directors but does not work at the firm and has been pursuing a career in politics. Braun will play Greg, Logan’s less than competent nephew and a management trainee at one of the firm’s theme parks. Macfadyen is Tom, Shiv’s ambitious partner/fiancé and a senior executive at the firm.
But that is not all. Hiam Abbass (Exodus: Gods and Kings), Alan Ruck (TV’s The Exorcist), Rob Yang (The Bourne Legacy), Parker Sawyers (young Barack Obama in Southside With You) and Peter Friedman (The Path) also are a part of the action. Abbas will play Marcia (Marcy), current wife of Logan, seen as a loving, formidable partner. Ruck is Connor Roy, the eldest son and only child from Logan’s first marriage. Although also on the board of directors at the firm, Connor paves his own way. Yang is Lawrence, founder and CEO of a digital media outfit who is the target of a buyout. Sawyers will play Alessandro, a young, bright, up-and-coming executive at the family firm. Friedman is Francis (Frank), COO of the firm, old family friend and a mentor figure to Kendall Roy.
Of course, we will have to see if this McKay project, penned by Jesse Armstrong (The Thick of It), gets picked up based on this pilot. We await the verdict.
- Terence Winter Back to Work at HBO
We already know that notorious drug lord Griselda Blanco’s story is to be developed for HBO by Jennifer Lopez who will executive produce and star. But to get the project further along requires someone to write the teleplay and we learned that Terence Winter will take on that duty.
HBO has, of course, worked with Winter as a producer, writer and showrunner through the years. His latest stint was VINYL and we all know what happened there. So Winter was in need of a job. He stated at a Writers Guild event that “I’m still working with HBO and working on something for them.”
The Griselda Blanco movie marks a return to films for Winter who has several other biopics in the works, including writing the Andy Warhol biopic starring Jared Leto and an untitled Mike Tyson biopic starring Jamie Foxx. So he knows a thing or two about putting together a biopic. Lopez’ Nuyorican Productions will take his words and flesh out the story of the female drug kingpin that ruled in the 1970’s and ‘80’s.
It is always good to have Terence Winter around. After all, he was a big part of getting THE SOPRANOS, BOARDWALK EMPIRE and VINYL to us.
- Cinemax will feel the MICRONESIAN BLUES Next
Cool title and the book that goes by that name is being developed into a series on Cinemax. MICRONESIAN BLUES, written by Jonathan Tropper and to be directed by Greg Yaitanes, is based on the true story of a burned out LA cop who accepts a teaching job in Micronesia, only to find himself caught up in a bloody war between tribal gangsters, lawless mercenaries, and crooked CIA agents. Patrick Dempsey (Grey’s Anatomy) is said to be onboard. Tropper & Yaitanes are coming off of the four-season run of BANSHEE. We will flesh out more if it comes to fruition.
- Cinemax Also Seeks Pilot of WARRIOR
WARRIOR is a work based on original material written by martial arts icon Brue Lee. Justin Lin of Fast & Furious fame is looking to craft it into a work for Cinemax. Set against the backdrop of San Francisco’s Chinatown in the aftermath of the Civil War, it tells the story of a young martial arts prodigy, newly arrived from China, who finds himself caught up in the bloody Chinatown Tong wars.
Sounds right up Bruce Lee’s alley and Lin will be working with Bruce Lee Enterprises and Lee’s daughter Shannon to bring the story to life with Jonathan Tropper as writer. Another one to look forward to seeing if it all comes together.
Again, just a cleanup of straggling items that were somehow not presented more timely. We wanted to start off the new year with a clean slate. Back with more in 2017. Stick with us.