Art and John Linson, the executive producers behind Sons of Anarchy, have secured rights to a book that will flesh out to be a drama series on the Vietnam War era. The work obtained is a Pulitzer Prize winning book entitled “The Long Gray Line: The American Journey of West Point’s Class of 1966” by Rick Atkinson. Publisher’s Weekly said of the tome –
“Since its founding by Thomas Jefferson in 1802, the United States Military Academy, “fortress of virtue, preserve of the nation’s values,” has exerted a powerful and lasting influence on its graduates. As revealed in this Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter’s eloquent and heartfelt narrative, the class of 1966 was subjected to oral and ethical pressures that were unique, partly because it was “the first generation of West Pointers to join a losing Army,” and partly because of the radical change in society’s attitude toward the military during the latter years of the Vietnam era. Atkinson profiles a handful of representatives of that class, following them from their high-spirited cadet years, through the crucible of Southeast Asia and–of those who survived–into the hard peace that ensued. The book is a poignant, thought-provoking account of the struggles of young men who pledged themselves to “Honor, Duty, Country,” but found that living up to West Point’s iron standards was difficult and in some cases impossible.”
Art and John Linson are a father/son team behind some great movies and TV shows. Father Art has been behind such works as Fight Club and Into The Wild; where John has teamed up with his father to give us FX’s Sons of Anarchy, now in its concluding season. They would certainly be an asset for HBO if THE LONG GRAY LINE materializes. It looks promising considering what Michael Lombardo, president of HBO Programming, had to say.
“We are extremely pleased that Art and John (pictured) have brought the prestigious The Long Gray Line to HBO. This riveting drama puts a face on the young men who valiantly went off to a controversial war in Vietnam and returned to a different world. It is our honor to tell their story.”
In case you didn’t recall the Linsons were also the executive producers behind the failed pilot THE MONEY and are looking to bring another work, YELLOWSTONE, to the channel as we reported earlier. HBO has not shied away from the topic of war and its effects. HBO has aired works about the Revolutionary War with JOHN ADAMS; both World Wars with PARADE’S END, BAND OF BROTHERS and THE PACIFIC and modern day Middle East conflict with GENERATION KILL. A work addressing the controversial Vietnam War is missing from its catalog. This adaptation, being penned by military author Phil Klay, would be a great addition. For that reason we did not bury this concept in a Slate piece but give it a stand-alone post. Does it interest anyone? Let us know below.