2:30pm PT by Rick Porter
Katie Couric, 'The Report's' Scott Z. Burns Set Projects at AMC Networks
AMC Networks and its in-house production arm, AMC Studios, on Thursday unveiled a sizable slate of development projects from producers including Katie Couric, The Report writer-director Scott Z. Burns and Turn: Washington's Spies creator Craig Silverstein, among others.
The studio is also looking to become a seller, earmarking four projects for potential sale to outside companies. The seven titles being developed for AMC Networks don't yet have specific destinations within the group headed by Sarah Barnett.
"We’re looking for highly original visions and voices as we think about how AMC Networks evolves. The projects in development both on the Entertainment Group side and at AMC Studios all embrace people with singular and surprising points of view,” said Barnett, president of AMC Networks Entertainment Group and AMC Studios. "We will prioritize creative risk-taking that doesn't rely on the shock and awe of sheer size, but instead delivers the surprise and delight of brilliant storytelling in our quest to stand out with human-scaled brands in this dynamic and changing content environment. There is so much phenomenal talent to discover and so many new, different, electric stories to be told."
AMC Studios' current output includes the Walking Dead franchise, The Terror, NOS4A2 and the upcoming Dispatches From Elsewhere, plus unscripted franchises including James Cameron's History of Science Fiction and Eli Roth's History of Horror.
A rundown of the development slate follows.
For AMC Networks:
More as This Story Develops | Inspired by the friendship between Couric and former Larry King Live executive producer Wendy Walker (who also inspired the 2016 ABC drama Notorious), it will follow two young women who begin their careers in broadcast news in the 1980s, charting the moments in history they covered. Couric and Walker produce.
National Anthem | A musical dramedy following a family who, after falling down the ladder of American life, needs to figure out what actually makes life worth living. Burns (The Report, The Laundromat) is writing and executive producing along with Mark Johnson (Breaking Bad, Better Call Saul). Craig Finn of The Hold Steady will write original music, and T Bone Burnett will be the music producer.
Sleeping Beauties | Based on a novel by Owen and Stephen King, it's set in an Appalachian town where a mystical occurrence causes all women there to fall asleep, leaving the men to rescue them. But do the women want to be rescued? Owen King will adapt the book and executive produce with Michael Sugar and Ashley Zalta for Sugar 23 and Stephen King.
Bunny | A lonely student is drawn into a mysterious clique of girls and begins partaking in their strange off-campus ritual — conjuring boys from rabbits, where the good ones stay as romantic partners and the bad ones are mercilessly axed. Megan Mostyn Brown (NOS4A2, Gotham) is adapting Mona Awad's novel.
Pantheon | An animated sci-fi drama from Craig Silverstein (Turn, Nikita) that's set in a world where uploaded consciousness is a reality. When a young woman receives messages from someone claiming to be her dead father, she stumbles on a larger conspiracy involving the singularity. Based on short stories by Ken Liu. Titmouse (Big Mouth, Bless the Harts) will serve as the animation production company.
Nigeria 2099 | Set in a futuristic world, the thriller follows Sgt. Charles Opkara, a police officer in a poor district of Lagos who is assigned to protect a visiting American businessman. Opkara starts to unravel a global conspiracy over depleting resources. Ahmadu Garba (Happy, The Sinner) is writing; Mo Abudo and Heidi Uys of Nigeria's EbonyLife TV executive produce.
Silverbird | An Army veteran falls in with a group of mercenaries on their way to Africa for an unusual mission: to protect threatened animals by entering into armed conflict with poachers. Scott Gold (Shooter, Chicago PD) is the writer and will executive produce with Harriet Gavshon and Tim Green of South Africa's Quizzical Pictures.
For AMC Studios for possible sale to other outlets:
The Sparrow | Based on the sci-fi novel by Mary Doria Russell, it follows the events after Earth receives the first evidence of intelligent extraterrestrial life. Mark Johnson (Breaking Bad) executive produces, and Chernobyl's Johan Renck will direct and exec produce.
Fates and Furies | The drama explores two perspectives of a marriage and the truths and secrets that develop over 24 years. Based on a novel by Lauren Groff and written and exec produced by Eliza Clark (FX's Y: The Last Man adaptation, TNT's Animal Kingdom) and Zack Whedon (Halt and Catch Fire).
I Run Hot | Broad City alum Eliot Glazer writes and will star in a comedy about the unlikely friendship between Eliot, a gay curmudgeon who never quite fit in with the community, and Colton, a famous "#instagay" who can't help but embody it. Broad City co-creator and star Ilana Glazer will direct and exec produce.
Work It Out | Anna Camp (Perfect Harmony) is attached to star in and executive produce a dark comedy about an aspiring aerobics star in early 1990s Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, who will do whatever it takes to establish her workout empire. Becca Gleason writes and exec produces with Camp, director Michael Showalter and Jordana Mollick of Semi-Formal Productions.