Joel and Ethan Coen are a cinematic force to be reckoned with, thanks to a filmography that includes No Country for Old Men, O Brother Where Art Thou and The Big Lebowski. And yet, the only time the brothers have delved into television was for a Fox TV show called HarveKarbo that ultimately never materialized.
Now, according to a recent report, FX has closed a deal to turn the duo's Oscar-winning film Fargo (1996) into an hourlong drama series.
Courtesy of Deadline, the Coen brothers will act as executive producers on the series - to be scripted by Noah Hawley (Bones) - and will only be loosely based on the film. The 1996 dark comedy followed a faux criminal plot gone wrong with Frances McDormand as a jovial, pregnant police chief from Minnesota trying to track down a couple of criminals (Steve Buscemi and Peter Stormare) responsible for the death of a policeman and the (staged) kidnapping of a car salesman's (William H. Macy) wife.
It's hard to see how that might be adapted into an entire series, so I'm betting the show will merely follow some police officers working in or around the town of Fargo, North Dakota. However, a crime procedural with comedic and dramatic elements could definitely be crafted using Fargo's setting and memorable characters, McDormand's character in particular.
Here's just a taste of the interrogation we might get from a crime series based on Fargo:
No other details are known about the forthcoming series, but with FX involved, the project won't have the same kind of boundaries that the four major networks would have to adhere to - which means a cameo from the film's famous woodchipper isn't out of the question.
The only concern is whether or not the show will be able to capture the strange, unique spirit that Joel and Ethan Coen inject into their films. Hopefully, their involvement on the show will be substantial enough to make it work.
The Coen Brothers' next film, Gambit, will hit theaters in 2013.