Based on James Ellroy’s noir classic novel and executive produced by Arnon Milchan, L.A. Confidential is heading to the small screen, which will be a tonally modern version of Ellroy’s source material and subsequent 1997 feature film from director Curtis Hanson.
Written by Jordan Harper, the series will follow three homicide detectives, a female reporter and a Hollywood actress whose paths intersect as the detectives pursue a sadistic serial killer among the secrets and lies of gritty, glamorous 1950s Los Angeles. Harper executive produces with Milchan. The project is described as having a modern tone, music, and style while still being set in the ’50s. New Regency, which produced the film and controls the rights to the IP, will produce the drama alongside Lionsgate Television and CBS Television Studios.
James Ellroy’s 1990 neo-noir novel was adapted into a 1997 big-screen film that starred Guy Pearce, Kevin Spacey, Kim Basinger, and Russell Crowe and was nominated for nine Academy Awards, winning two: Basinger for Best Supporting Actress and Hanson and Helgeland for Best Adapted Screenplay; it lost in all the other categories to Titanic. In 2015, the United States Library of Congress selected the film for preservation in the National Film Registry, finding it “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.
This is not the first attempt at an L.A. Confidential series; a pilot with Kiefer Sutherland and Eric Roberts was filmed (and offered as a special feature on the film’s DVD/Blu-Ray release), and ultimately pitched to networks in 2013, but did not go to series.
CBS also ordered pilots for three more dramas, including: Red Line, a racially charged cop show about a white policeman accidentally killing a black doctor, executive-produced by Ava DuVernay and Greg Berlanti; Main Justice, a legal thriller from uber-producer Jerry Bruckheimer that’s based on the life of former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder; and The Code, a military drama about U.S. Marine Corps attorneys from Craig Sweeny (Limitless) and Craig Turk (The Good Wife).
No word yet on when we might see this new iteration of L.A. Confidential.
Images: Warner Bros.