Amazon continues to sign off on some big, high concept TV shows. They’ve infamously paid a king’s ransom for the rights to a Lord Of The Rings prequel series, and just two days ago set up an adaptation of William Gibson‘s 2014 novel The Peripheral from the Westworld creators.
Now, they’ve got their hands on the remake of UK series Utopia. If this project sounds vaguely familiar, it’s because it seemed like a big deal back in 2014 when HBO and David Fincher made a deal to remake the show as a six episode series with Rooney Mara starring. However, the project reportedly went way over budget and Fincher and HBO’s relationship ended after a year with no finished projects.
The Utopia remake has now moved over to Amazon, where Gone Girl author and screenwriter Gillian Flynn will serve as the showrunner. She was a part of Fincher’s vision for the show at HBO, where she was a producer as well as signing on to write the adaptation. She will now be credited as the sole creator, executive producer and showrunner of the series.
This is part of an overall deal Flynn has signed with Amazon, with Utopia serving as her first project. The show now also has a nine episode order instead.
The original UK series aired on Channel 4 and revolved around a group of young adults who meet online before being hunted down by a shadowy deep state organisation. They come into possession of a mythical underground graphic novel, and begin to realise that the conspiracy theories in the comic’s pages may be real, and they’re forced into the strange position of having to save the world.
Flynn said in a statement:
“Utopia is pure creative catnip to me. Dennis Kelly‘s show blew my mind, and he has been so incredibly generous in letting me crack open his world and play around in it and make it my own weird, wild place. Utopia is all about exploring resonant issues within dark, twisted storytelling — it’s a series that’s urgent and current and a little holy-crap! but a hell of a lot of fun”.
The show is a great fit for Flynn’s preference for writing dark, cerebral stories, and it’s exciting to have her in complete control of an entire series. Utopia likely won’t have the demographical reach of the Lord Of The Rings prequel series, but it has the chance to be Amazon’s most critically acclaimed series considering Flynn’s immense talent.