Saturday, April 25, 2009

Scorsese Calling

Michael Pitt in talks for Boardwalk Empire
Posted Jan 1st 2009 10:33AM by Jane Boursaw
Filed under: Other Drama Shows, TV Royalty, Programming, OpEd, Casting, Reality-Free
I'm crazy for HBO, and one of the shows I'm really looking forward to is Boardwalk Empire, a pilot executive produced by Martin Scorsese (who's also directing), Mark Wahlberg, Stephen Levinson, and Terence Winter (who's also penning the pilot).
Based on the Nelson Johnson book Boardwalk Empire: The Birth, High Times, and Corruption of Atlantic City, the project chronicles the 1920s origins of Atlantic City, New Jersey. From what I've read, it sounds like a mix of The Departed, The Sopranos and Goodfellas -- all favorites of mine. And the cast they've got lined up couldn't be better.
Steve Buscemi plays Nucky Johnson, a businessman who runs a liquor distribution ring at the beginning of Prohibition. Michael Pitt (pictured) is in negotiations to play Jimmy Darmody, a bright, young, ruthless WWI veteran who serves as a flunky for Nucky, but yearns for more power.
Terence Winter was involved with The Sopranos; he wrote, directed, and executive produced the series. Levinson and Wahlberg have both served as executive producers on HBO's In Treatment and Entourage. And Scorsese ... well, do I really need to point out his credits? I think not.
With a team like this, could Boardwalk Empire be anything less than magnificent? If it is, I'll be completely shocked.
HBO signs writer to Scorsese's Boardwalk Empire
Posted Jun 4th 2008 7:05PM by Allison Waldman
Filed under: Cable/Satellite, Reality-Free
It sounds like HBO is looking for another series in The Sopranos tradition. Or maybe it was The Sopranos that was in the Scorsese tradition? Either way, we recently told you about Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese's HBO project Boardwalk Empire (teaming with Mark Wahlberg and Stephen Levinson of Entourage fame), and now we can report that they've hired Terence Winter to pen the script for Boardwalk Empire. That's the name of Nelson Johnson's book about the dark underbelly in the rise and fall of Atlantic City, on which this project will be based. Call me crazy, but this sounds like perfect material for Scorsese's sensibilities, even if he's producing rather than directing.

Boardwalk Empire is still in the development phase, with a pilot yet to be ordered, but today's development is a sign that things are progressing. Winter was intimately involved with The Sopranos, working his way up to executive producer in addition to writing and directing. The Brooklyn born writer told Variety, "HBO's been my home for nine years. From day one I've never been happier working for any network or group of people. They presented me with this book and said they thought a series was there -- go find it."

As with so many projects that are in development, we'll have to wait and see where this one actually goes. However, the prospect Scorsese plus The Sopranos plus criminal activities in an allegedly corrupt place like Atlantic City all adds up to something I'd tune in to see.


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