The current fascination with 1960s period dramas in the U.S. is spreading internationally. Ridley and Tony Scott have come aboard to produce The Drivers, a series based on the high-octane 24-hour motor race in Le Mans during the 1950s-1960s. The Scott’s Scott Free will co-produce with Headline Pictures and Sennet Entertainment the project, funded by FremantleMedia as part of their strategy of developing and package drama series for the international market. The series is based on the book, Shelby: The Man, The Cars, the Legend, written by Wallace A. Wyss and optioned from Iconografix, which tells the true story of wild young drivers from the US, Germany, France, Italy and Britain, friends and rivals, amateurs risking everything for a shot on the tracks. “I grew up in the North of England at a time when Stirling Moss was a hero,” Ridley Scott said. “Everyone wanted to be a racing driver. This is a hugely ambitious project and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to tell the story of these iconic and legendary men who risked everything to win at Le Mans. It’s an epic story of courage and ambition and a history of racing which has never been told on such a grand scale.” In the U.S., where AMC’s 1960s drama Mad Men has been piling up accolades, dramas set in the 1950s and 1960s are red-hot this season with broadcast pilots Playboy on NBC and Pan Am on ABC and new Starz series Magic City. Scott Free Films, Headline Pictures and FremantleMedia also recently partnered to adapt Philip K. Dick’s novel The Man in the High Castle into a 4-part miniseries for the BBC written by Howard Brenton.
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