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Christopher McQuarrie Launches Transmedia Navy SEAL Drama

By | Friday October 14, 2011 @ 8:02am PDT
Mike Fleming

Christopher McQuarrie will write, produce and direct Rubicon, a new property that is intended to be turned into a movie, graphic novel and videogame. McQuarrie is directing Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher in One Shot, but the project was announced at NY Comic-Con by coproducers Mark Long and Dan Capel. They describe the project as The Seven Samurai, set in Afghanistan with Navy SEALs as the heroes, and the Taliban the villains. Since Navy SEAL Team Six killed Osama Bin Laden, the SEALs have become the centerpiece of numerous feature films.

“The three of us wanted to do a SEAL project, Dan was a founding member of SEAL Team Six and Chris’s brother commanded a team, but we wanted a new way in to the world of Tier One operators,” said Long, who added that the intention was to “explore the true nature of war, for both its heroes and its victims.” Said McQuarrie: “I’ve always been fascinated with Navy SEALs in general and their role in Afghanistan in particular. With Rubicon, Mark Long and Dan Capel have created the perfect environment for an intense action franchise.” The plan is to create the multiplatform properties simultaneously, with separate but complementary storylines. They’ll tease the graphic novel on Panelfly this month, and include the first chapter of Berserker, an autobiography that Capel has written.

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AMC Cancels ‘Rubicon’ After 1 Season

Nellie Andreeva

It was a short run for AMC’s Rubicon, which is being canceled after one season. The political thriller, produced by Warner Horizon Television, premiered on Aug. 1, a year after it was ordered to series, and never found a wide audience, averaging 1.6 million viewers and  439,000 among 18-49 in its first season. It becomes the first AMC original series to get canceled. Here is AMC’s statement: “Rubicon gave us an  opportunity to tell a rich and compelling story and we’re very proud of the series.  This was not an easy decision, but we are grateful to have had the opportunity to work with such a phenomenally talented and dedicated team.”

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Ratings Rat Race: Solid Start For ‘Rubicon’

Nellie Andreeva

The 2-hour opener of AMC’s third original series, political thriller Rubicon, became the network’s highest-rated  and most-watched original series premiere ever, attracting 2M total viewers. For comparison, Mad Men averaged 900,000 viewers and Breaking Bad 1.2M viewers in their first seasons. Following Rubicon, the second episode of Mad Men’s fourth episode drew 2.5 million viewers, down 14% from last week’s season premiere. ”AMC is now three for three with our original series,” said Charlie Collier, president and GM of AMC. Rubicon, which moves to its regular Sunday 9 PM time slot next week, had already been sampled by 4.6 million viewers via the network’s sneak peek on-air as well as on VOD, iTunes, and Hulu.

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