2:21pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
AMC Orders Docudrama 'The West' From Robert Redford
AMC is heading west.
The cable network announced Friday at the Television Critics Association's summer press tour that it has ordered docudrama The West straight to series and renewed The Making of the Mob for a second season.
The West hails from from executive producers Stephen David of Stephen David Entertainment (The Men Who Built America) and Robert Redford's Sundance Productions. The eight hour-long episodes will air alongside the finale of seven installments of similarly themed Western drama Hell on Wheels in summer 2016. Production on The West will begin in August.
The West will be a blend of dramatic scenes and documentary footage and visual effects and explore the world of cowboys, Indians, outlaws and law men and chronicle the little-known stories of Western legends like Jesse James, Billy the Kid, Wyatt Earp, Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull. The limited series will span from 1865-1890. Exec producers on The West include David, Redford and Sundance Productions' Laura Michalchyshyn.
Additionally, AMC has renewed docuseries The Making of The Mob, which also hails from Stephen David Entertainment. Season two will consist of eight episodes and explore organized crime in Chicago, including the rise and fall of Al Capone. (Season one explored mob history in New York.) The decision to renew the series comes as Mob has averaged 1.5 million total viewers through six episodes when factoring in three days of delayed viewing. The season finale airs Aug. 3 at 10 p.m.
The West comes as AMC has largely abandoned unscripted fare. Adding a companion series for Hell on Wheels'' final season, however, provides a unique opportunity to expand the Western genre, which has been hot of late.