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HBO Developing Texas Drama From Larry McMurtry, Diana Ossana & Morgan Spurlock

By | Friday February 11, 2011 @ 6:00pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

EXCLUSIVE: Oscar-winning Brokeback Mountain writers Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana have teamed with Super Size Me documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock for a drama series project set up at HBO. The project, described as a big-canvas Texas political drama, is based on an idea by Spurlock, who, along with manager-producer Larry Shuman, approached McMurtry and Ossana. McMurtry and Ossana have written a script for the project, which they are executive producing for Fox TV Studios. Spurlock and Shuman are executive producing through their shingles, Warrior Poets and the Shuman Co., respectively, with McMurtry and Ossana’s manager Adam Shulman, Jennifer Berman and Warrior Poets’ Jeremy Chilnick also expected to produce.

On the feature side, McMurtry and Ossana are writing two major period Westerns for Scott Free, The Color of Lightning for Ridley Scott to direct at 20th Century Fox, and an adaptation of S. C. Gwynne’s book Empire of the Summer Moon for Warner Bros. with Crazy Heart helmer Scott Cooper attached to direct. McMurtry won a Pulitzer for his novel Lonesome Dove, which was made into a hit miniseries. UTA-repped McMurtry and Ossana adapted the Lonesome Dove prequel Comanche Moon into a 6-episode miniseries and have developed a couple of TV projects at the broadcast networks. Spurlock, repped CAA and the Arlook Group, exec produced and starred … Read More »

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‘Brokeback’ Duo Larry McMurtry And Diana Ossana Script Pair of Period Westerns

By | Tuesday December 14, 2010 @ 4:26pm PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Oscar-winning Brokeback Mountain scribes Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana are in the midst of two major period Western feature films projects. They are scripting The Color of Lightning for Ridley Scott to direct at 20th Century Fox, and they are at the center of a new deal at Warner Bros to adapt the S. C. Gwynne book Empire of the Summer Moon into a film that will be directed by Crazy Heart helmer Scott Cooper. Both projects are produced by Scott Free.

First, they will complete The Color of Lightning, an adaptation the Paulette Jiles book that was published by Harper Collins. Britt Johnson is a freed slave who moves his wife and three children to Texas with dreams of starting a freight business. When he’s away, a raiding party of Comanche and Kiowa kill his oldest son and take his family captive. Johnson spends a winter plotting revenge. The story is loosely based on a factual tale said to be an inspiration for the classic Western The Searchers.

The S.C. Gwynne book Empire of the Summer Moon is certainly more sympathetic to the Comanches. The book is a Braveheart-style epic  about the great Comanche warrior Quanah, who held the westward expansion of settlers at bay for 40 years, and led to the formation of the Texas Rangers to fight against them.

Published last summer by Scribner, Empire of the Summer Moon Read More »

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