It looks as though Norman Bates will be terrorizing unlucky travelers once more, as A&E recently announced they've ordered a full season of Bates Motel from former Lost writer and executive producer Carlton Cuse, with the intention of having the series ready to air by 2013.
A&E joins NBC in bringing another monstrous movie murderer to the small screen to more closely examine what makes him tick. Similar to what Bryan Fuller's upcoming Hannibal series plans to do with Hannibal Lecter, A&E's Bates Motel will feature a younger version of Norman Bates (originally played to perfection by actor Anthony Perkins in Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 horror masterpiece, Psycho) and place him front and center in the storyline.
The series has been described as a mash-up of Twin Peaks and Smallville - apparently for its ability to combine the bizarrely macabre with a somewhat nostalgic look at a character rapidly approaching his destiny. Bates Motel aims to investigate the relationship between Norman and his mother - or, more specifically, how Norman's exposure to his unhinged mother and her relationships permanently sent the young man off his rocker.
Also like Hannibal, this series will be skipping the pilot phase altogether to head straight to series. Originally, Bates Motel was considered to be a six-part event with the possibility of expansion should it prove successful, but after Cuse came on board - joining former Friday Night Lights writer and producer Kerry Ehrin - the network turned the project into a 10-episode first season.
Earlier this week, A&E president Bob DeBitetto and executive vice president of programming Dave McKillop announced the project by saying:
"We are proud to be partnering with Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin on their thrilling reinvention of one of the most compelling characters in cinematic history. It's a provocative project from two of the best storytellers in the business, and we’re looking forward to getting started."
With the pilot episode already written by series creator Anthony Cipriano (whose previous credits include scripting former Dexter co-executive producer Michael Cuesta's feature film, Twelve and Holding) the next step in the process turns to casting. At this point, though, there has been no word on potential candidates for the role of Norman or his mother, but expect word on those roles very soon.
Interestingly enough, Norman Bates tried his hand at television in the late '80s when NBC aired a television movie also titled Bates Motel that starred Harold and Maude's Bud Cort, Jason Bateman and future Tank Girl, Lori Petty. Then, in 1990, Psycho IV - a direct to cable movie - aired on Showtime and similarly explored Bates' beginnings (and specifically his dysfunctional relationship with his mother). It was not received particularly well.
Screen Rant will keep you up to date with all the casting announcements for Bates Motel as they are made available.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter