Deadline.com breaks that THE LAST TYCOON, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s unfinished novel, got the go to be developed as a new dramatic series for the channel. Supposedly five networks were circling around the concept and HBO got the bid.
Spearheading the project is writer Billy Ray. He has written such films as Flight Plan, Hunger Games and Captain Phillips and has also directed the movies Breach and Shattered Glass. He is set to write and direct THE LAST TYCOON. It will be produced by Sony Pictures TV under Chris Keyser whose biggest credit is producing and writing for TV’s Party Of Five.
THE LAST TYCOON will give us the story arc, if it is picked up, of Monroe Stahr a fictional character said to be Hollywood’s first wunderkind studio executive. The character, inspired by the life of movie tycoon Irving Thalberg, is out to be the biggest film mogul of the 1930’s and the series will show Stahr as he climbs to the height of power pitting him against his mentor and current head of the studio Pat Brady, (based on Louis B. Mayer). With Stahr as a focal point, the series delves into the true violence, sex and towering ambition of Hollywood in the 30′s.
Cinematic versions of the story have appeared before; there was a Playhouse 90 in 1957 with Jack Palance in the lead and again in 1976 as an Elia Kazan directed picture with Robert DeNiro. Now, if all goes well, HBO will have its turn to recreate the world of Hollywood in the 1930’s and the major dealings in the studio system of the day. Does this sound of interest to anyone?