The Crown's Olivia Colman is to star in Alexander Payne-directed crime drama Landscapers for HBO and Sky.
Landscapers is produced by Chernobyl producer Sister and is the first television screenplay from Ed Sinclair, Colman's husband. It is being co-produced by South of the River Pictures, the new production company established by Colman and Sinclair, as revealed by Deadline.
The four-part series is the latest co-production between WarnerMedia's premium network HBO and Comcast-backed Sky following the success of the nuclear disaster drama Chernobyl, which won ten Emmys in September.
Directed by The Descendants and Sideways director Payne, the series is inspired by real events. It tells the story of killers Susan and Christopher Edwards. Colman will play Susan Edwards. The pair, a mild-mannered couple from Mansfield in the UK, killed Susan's parents and buried the in their back garden. The crime remained undiscovered for over a decade. It is a blackly comic true-crime drama based on extensive research, hours of interviews and direct access to the accused, who have always protested their innocence of murder.
Patricia and William Wycherley were shot dead at their home in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, on the May Day Bank Holiday weekend in 1998. Susan and Christopher Edwards subsequently cleared out their bank accounts and spent the money on things including Hollywood memorabilia such as a letter autographed by Sergeant York star Gary Cooper.
Pivoting through various perspectives from Susan and Chris, to the police officers and lawyers involved in the investigation, the drama also explores how the pair cast themselves as Hollywood heroes in their own story.
The series will start filming in 2020 and will air on Sky Atlantic and Now TV in the UK and on Sky in Germany, Italy, Spain and Ireland as well as HBO in the U.S. International sales for Landscapers will be handled by NBCUniversal Global Distribution.
The series was commissioned by Zai Bennett, Managing Director of Content, Sky UK and Ireland, and Cameron Roach, Director of Drama, Sky Studios. Serena Thompson is the Executive Producer for Sky, while Jane Featherstone and Chris Fry will exec produce for Sister alongside Ed Sinclair and Olivia Colman and Alexander Payne. Katie Carpenter produces.
Colman said, “I love Ed's scripts, which is just as well as he cooks many of my meals. No, the truth is it's quite rare to be desperate to play a part on the first reading of a script, but that was the case here. The writing is brave, but subtle and tender too – a joy for any actor.”
Sister co-founder Jane Featherstone said, “The intelligence and deeply imaginative breadth of first time screenwriter Ed Sinclair's scripts sees a constant re-invention of...
SPOILER ALERT: If you are among the few who haven’t actually watched Netflix’s Tiger King docuseries, this review contains a lot of details about what goes down in the sad big cat saga.
With Netflix poised in the coming days to cash in and crank the base up a notch with more Tiger King, it's time to come out and say it: I hate the Red State porn that is the crash and burn of Joe Exotic
The initial seven episodes of this septic and shallow patchwork of trademark infringement, sex, guns, labor exploitation, song, drugs, mullets, betrayal, animal activism, revenge, and a lot of big cats may be much binged over these weeks of coronavirus lockdown, but that doesn't mean it's actually worth watching.
Now, I get it, I sound like I'm just a dour critic who hates anything that isn't prestige premium cable or aspirational. C'mon man, you want to say, Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness is just so unbelievable, I can't look away.
I respectfully disagree, and in fact, propose Tiger King isn't just bad, but dangerous in a divided America persistently looking to reduce the other side to caricature.
In a presently ailing nation where TV is more voluminous and vital than ever, the truth is the March 20 launched Tiger King is a clawed white trash misery index. Gawking at some clearly fragile and damaged people like would-be reality TV star Exotic and their below the Mason-Dixon line antics, the series subsequently provides a cultural circus for those smug bicoastals under stay at home orders and screaming to rise up in moral superiority.
Essentially, the tale of big cat collector, self-styled Oklahoma zoo proprietor and 2016 Presidential candidate Exotic AKA Joseph Maldonado-Passage and his ultimately unsuccessful attempt to have rival Carole Baskin knocked off by a hitman hired for $3,000, Tiger King is in that context more a zero-sum game, literally and figuratively, than hitting the zeitgeist.
Obviously, Netflix are pretty damn good at gauging and dragging the public mood over the years, as the likes of the then phenomenon of 2015's Making A Murderer or 2018’s Wild Wild Country prove. Yet, for all the attention it has drawn, this unfocused murder for hire exploration of sorts emerges as a bastard child of Cops, a million Dateline segments from the 1990s and Fox’s short-lived Murder in Small Town X reality show from 2001.
Not exactly the prestige product that the home of Roma, The Irishman and American Factory likes to brag about at award shows. Then again, with the knowledge that the Romans sold out the Colosseum every night feeding Christians to the lions, the bottom line based House of Hastings surely loves the subscription sign up that the currently incarcerated Maldonado-Passage and the accompanying motley gaggle of...
In 1955, Oscar-winning actor Charles Laughton, who appeared in films like Witness for the Prosecution, Mutiny on the Bounty, and Spartacus, stepped behind the camera as a director for the first and only time. The result was The Night of the Hunter, a dark, moody thriller starring Robert Mitchum as a serial killer, and a movie that is beloved by cinephiles and has influenced generations of filmmakers and storytellers. It’s a stone-cold classic: not just one of the best films ever directed by an actor, but a movie that many including the revered film magazine Cahiers du cinéma consider to be one of the best films ever made, period.
So while it’s not exactly surprising to learn that Universal is developing a remake, the news does arrive with the same exhausted sense of, “But…why?” that always accompanies stories like this.The Night of the Hunter Remake
Variety broke the news about the remake, which is described as “a contemporary version of the original thriller, rather than a period piece.” Screenwriter Matthew Orton is developing the movie for Universal Pictures. Orton only has one produced credit to his name thus far: he wrote a 2018 spy thriller called Operation Finale which I have not seen but it looks pretty good. Peter Gethers Lay the Favorite and Amy Pascal Spider-Man: Homecoming, Little Women will serve as producers. Still, knowing how great this movie is makes news about a remake tough to swallow. There are thousands of middling movies with solid premises from the golden era of studio filmmaking – why mess with a classic?
The 1955 film, which is based on a novel by author David Grubb, follows a sociopathic preacher who travels the country marrying women for their money, murdering them, and then moving on to the next town. During a stint in jail, the preacher learns that his cell mate has $10,000 stashed somewhere; after the cell mate dies and the preacher gets out, he goes looking for the money, conning the cell mate’s widow into a relationship and trying to coax the location of the cash out of her two young children.
Mitchum’s preacher becomes increasingly unhinged as his patience wears thin, and his menacing performance scared the hell out of an entire generation of moviegoers, and many people have called The Night of the Hunter one of the scariest films they’ve ever seen. Here’s the very old-fashioned trailer with an introduction by Gremlins filmmaker Joe Dante explaining how it scarred him as a child, followed by a spoiler-heavy video in which Oscar-winning director Guillermo del Toro talks about how much the film means to him because of the way it blends horror and beauty on screen: