If there are two things that filmmaker David Fincher loves (at least, based on his past work) it's music videos and crime tales, and this year moviegoers can see his latest return to the latter genre in Gone Girl, Fincher's adaptation of the novel of the same name by Gillian Flynn. Moving forward, Fincher is working with Flynn once more with the development of Utopia, a TV series based on a British show of the same name, which the duo are developing for HBO.
Utopia seems to be part of a growing interest in television for Fincher. Progress on sequels to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo appears to have been stalled indefinitely, but Fincher recently tried his hand at directing for television with episodes of Netflix's hit drama House of Cards and, according to the latest rumors, is developing another HBO show alongside Utopia.
The Playlist reports that Fincher is working alongside novelist James Ellroy to create a noir-ish crime series for HBO, which will be set in 1950s Los Angeles. Ellroy's past works include novels like "L.A. Confidential" and "Brown's Requiem" that have been adapted into feature films, and for a while Fincher was attached to direct an adaptation of Ellroy's novel "The Black Dahlia" (though the job eventually went to Brian de Palma). According to "sources close to the project," Fincher and Ellroy have long been mutual admirers and are now working to finally get their first collaborative project onto people's screens.
Although television has been looked down upon in the past as being a "lesser" art form than feature film, attitudes have been changing in recent years as shows like Breaking Bad, Games of Thrones and The Walking Dead draw not only huge audiences but also a substantial amount of critical acclaim. While there are certain limitations to working with a television formula - both creatively and in terms of budget constraints - the episodic format and lengthy overall running time also offers opportunities to create deeper and more complex stories than might be possible within the three-act structure of a feature film.
The Playlist's article speculates (it's unclear how much of this is based on what the sources have said) that Fincher has found television to be the "path of least resistance" lately, and that "going long, wide and deep into characters and story is currently his new fascination." As well as Utopia and his new project with Ellroy, Fincher is also said to still be interested in making something of Mind Hunter, a series about FBI investigations into serial killers that he was developing several years ago with Charlize Theron attached as a producer.
That makes three potential upcoming TV shows that could have Fincher's name on them, two of which are currently in development at HBO. Mind Hunter was also originally intended to be a collaboration between HBO and Fox 21. If production moves ahead smoothly, the network could soon have Fincher spearheading the next big name in its original drama programming.
Source: The Playlist