Art and John Linson, the father/son pair who were executive producers for FX’s Sons of Anarchy, are working on bringing the story of T. E. Lawrence to HBO. The source material is a bestselling book by Scott Anderson entitled “Lawrence In Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly And The Making Of The Modern Middle East.”
Thomas Edward Lawrence served in the British Army in the Middle East in the 1910’s and ended up at the heart of the Arab Revolt of 1917, a campaign to unite the Arab world from the Ottoman Empire. The Allied Forces were assisting Arabia and Lawrence was at major battles like the one in Aqaba, Jordan. The 1962 David Lean movie, starring Peter O’Toole as T. E., is an award-winning classic.
Now we may get HBO’s take on the tale with Anthony McCarten, (Oscar nominated for penning The Theory Of Everything) writing the screenplay. It is way too soon to know if this is being adapted as an HBO Film presentation or a miniseries. However, if the whole story of the Allies support of the Arab world back then and the officers, like Lawrence, who manned the cause is to be told fully than you’d think a larger format would be required.
We can offer a blurb about Anderson’s book to help with further insight:
An Amazon Best Book of the Month, August 2013: Scott Anderson’s “Lawrence in Arabia” is a marvel of a history book. The research is impeccable. The story is fascinating and unforgettable. And the characters are so compelling that they seem to have been plucked from a novel. During World War I, the course of the modern day Middle East was set by a handful of young, low-ranking actors who exerted oversized influence on the region. Anderson focuses our attention on four men: a minor German diplomat and spy, an American oilman descended from the Yale family, a Romanian-born agronomist, and T.E. Lawrence himself. As we witness the western nations attempting to carve up a region that they were never able to master, these adventurous and often duplicitous men come to full life–none more so than Lawrence. The amount of research it must have taken to write this book is astounding. But there is no filler here: this is the kind of detail that causes the narrative to pop, that makes it live and breathe, and it will keep you reading long into the night. –Chris Schluep
Hopefully, the Linson’s project will live and breathe as an exciting edition to HBO’s cinematic library as well.