EXCLUSIVE: The BBC America series ends Sunday but Copper may get a second life on the big screen. One day after the network announced that the Civil War-era series would be cancelled after two seasons, I’ve learned that co-creator/executive producer Tom Fontana and fellow EPs Barry Levinson and Tom Kelly are considering a movie version. The extensive story arc work Fontana did on a third season has the veteran producer eyeing revamping the material for a movie, sources say, with the potential big-screen version said to look at examining life in America after the death of Abraham Lincoln and the years of Reconstruction. Copper, which Fontana co-created with Will Rokos, was BBC America’s first original scripted series and centers on Irish immigrant cop Kevin Corcoran in 1860s New York City. It premiered in August 2012 with 1.1 million total viewers, the largest audience ever for a BBC America series debut. Copper was renewed last October but lost momentum after its June 23 Season 2 premiere.
Pitching feature versions of cancelled TV shows are nothing new — but often don’t happen. After Showtime decided in June not to go ahead with a feature-scale finale of cancelled The Borgias, creator Neil Jordan opted to release the script as an e-book. Earlier this month, ABC Family released the script for The Nine Lives Of Chloe King: Salvation, a two-hour telefilm conclusion to the series that was cancelled in 2011 after one season. After TNT pulled the plug on Leverage, EP Dean Devlin said a big-screen version was a “possibility”, but nothing has happened on that front . On the other hand, a highly successful multimillion-dollar Kickstarter campaign helped give Veronica Mars new life as a film with Warner Bros Digital on board. That pic is scheduled to come out next year.
Deadline's Dominic Patten - tip him here.