1:00pm PT by Kate Stanhope
'Damnation' Lands Series Order at USA; Netflix Boards as Co-Producer
USA Network is swearing by Damnation.
The NBCUniversal cable network has ordered the period drama to series, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Additionally, Netflix has come onboard as a co-producer with Universal Cable Productions, and will have first-run rights to the drama outside of the U.S.
Described as "an epic saga of the secret history of the 1930s American heartland," Damnation centers on the struggle between big money and the downtrodden, God and greed, and charlatans and prophets during the Depression. The project centers on Seth Davenport (Ripper Street's Killian Scott), a man pretending to be a small-town Iowa preacher in the hopes of starting a full-blown insurrection against the status quo. Focused on his mission, he is unaware that an industrialist tycoon has hired a professional strikebreaker named Creeley Turner (Quarry's Logan Marshall-Green) to stop the uprising by whatever means necessary. Unbeknownst to those around them, these two men already share a secret bloody past.
Scott replaced Aden Young (Rectify), who was originally set to star but exited the project days before shooting on the pilot began last September.
The cast also includes Sarah Jones (Alcatraz), Chasten Harmon (BrainDead), Christopher Heyerdahl (Hell on Wheels), Melinda Page Hamilton (Mad Men) and Joe Adler (Grey's Anatomy), who guest-starred in the pilot and has been promoted to series regular as part of the pickup.
The show is expected to premiere in October, which is also when Emmy winner Mr. Robot is slated to return for season three.
Hell or High Water director David Mackenzie helmed the pilot fresh off the success of the Western, which was a summer sleeper hit last year and went onto earn an Oscar nomination for best picture. Tony Tost (Longmire) wrote the pilot and will executive produce with James Mangold (Walk the Line), Guymon Casady (Game of Thrones) and Daniel Rappaport (Office Space) on behalf of Entertainment 360. The project hails from Universal Cable Productions.
Damnation joins the recently picked up drama Unsolved at the network. The latter, which also boasts impressive auspices in pilot director Anthony Hemingway (The People v. O.J. Simpson), follows the multiple police investigations into the murders of rap stars Tupac Shakur and Christopher Wallace, aka the Notorious B.I.G.
USA Network's drama slate also include the long-running Suits, Mr. Robot, Colony, Queen of the South, Falling Water and the forthcoming psychological thriller The Sinner starring Jessica Biel.