Jakob Verbruggen replaces Cary Fukunaga as Director for The Alienist TV Series

Jakob VerbruggenDeadline reported earlier today that Jakob Verbruggen (The Fall, London Spy, House of Cards) will be replacing Cary Fukunaga (True Detective) as director for The Alienist TV series, set to air on TNT. It has also been revealed that the shooting location has moved again–this time, from New York to Budapest–with filming scheduled to begin in early 2017.

The TV drama series, first announced by Paramount Television and Anonymous Content in April/May of 2014, is said to have had a rocky development road, with Paramount TV and TNT going “back and forth” on a budget over the past year as the filming location was moved from Montreal to New York before finally settling on Budapest. Although Cary Fukunaga will no longer be directing the series, Deadline reports that he has written all episodes of the series, and will be retaining a role as executive producer. It is also reported that Eric Roth, Hossein Amini, and Anonymous Content’s Steve Golin and Rosalie Swedlin will be retaining their roles as executive producers.

Speaking about the decision to bring Jakob Verbruggen on board as director, Sarah Aubrey, the EVP of original programming for TNT, stated: “Jakob will capture the intensity of this edge-of-your-seat thriller. The Alienist’s unique setting and characters, along with its pervasively tense and unsettling mood, couldn’t be in better hands.”

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Happy 10th Anniversary, 17th Street!

The Statue of LibertyAs 2015 draws to a close, I would like to take a moment to recognise 17th Street’s 10th anniversary! 17th Street first went live on December 31st, 2005 with the aim of providing Caleb Carr’s readers with a one-stop resource for the Alienist books. Although I had hoped to put something together to commemorate this special milestone, time has not been on my side for the second half of the year; however, as 2015 turned out to be the year I finally made it to New York City — even staying for a week in a brownstone on Irving Place and 17th Street — perhaps I have recognised the milestone after all. For those readers who haven’t seen an account of my travels, you can read about them in the two Following The Footsteps of Dr. Kreizler blogs posted earlier this year.

To close out 2015, I have two final updates to 17th Street’s content that may be of interest to visitors. First, The Alienist TV Series page has been updated to reflect the news that Cary Fukunaga will not be directing the entire TV series. It is not yet clear who else will be directing or how having more than one director will impact the series, but as more news comes to light it will be updated here. Second, Caleb Carr recently wrote another op-ed that has been added to the Other Publications page.

Thank you all once more for an enjoyable year of running 17th Street. 2015 has proven to be an exciting year for Alienist readers with a considerable amount of news regarding the eagerly anticipated TV series, more news regarding Caleb Carr than we have seen in many years, and for this lucky Alienist reader, there was also my aforementioned trip to New York City. In addition to those updates, 17th Street has also seen the addition of four new book blogs, a discussion piece on the books we love, and various odds-and-ends updates to the website content. Finally, for the curious among you, here are the top ten most frequently visited pages on the site throughout 2015:

10. Third Alienist Book
9. Caleb Carr Press
8. Caleb Carr News
7. Caleb Carr Biography
6. The Alienist Summary
5. The Alienist TV Series
4. The Alienist Map of New York City
3. Full Character List
2. The Alienist Movie
1. The Alienist Timeline

And with that, have a safe and happy new year, everyone! I look forward to seeing what 2016 brings.


Cary Fukunaga talks The Alienist with EW

Cary FukunagaIn a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly regarding his latest production Beasts of No Nation, Cary Fukunaga shared some interesting details about how his role as director for The Alienist TV series might play out. Commenting on the lengthy preparation time the series’ “hundreds of pages” of material would require (as opposed to the “100 or 110 pages of material” required for a typical feature film), he explained: “If I were to direct the whole thing, I would probably break it up into two or three parts, almost as if it was two or three movies, and then prep them in that way.” Given the need for such a pre-production, he went on to state that he has considered taking on a “directional partner” so that they “could hop-scotch and help each other out and really approach it in the same spirit of a film, which is collaboration. They’re equal with you in terms of executing it.”

Having directed the eight episode series True Detective solo, EW reports that this would be the first time Fukunaga has ever taken on a directional partner, so such a move would certainly be an interesting development. Whether such a step is taken, however, will largely depend upon the scripts that are turned in, and Fukanaga’s bosses are also said to prefer his tackling the show on his own as well.

Cary Fukunaga’s full comments can be found at the Entertainment Weekly article. You can also catch up on prior developments regarding the series at 17th Street’s TV series page, or by perusing The Alienist TV series tag here on the blog.

Photo Credit: “Cary Fukunaga2009” by Johan GunnarssonFlickr: Cary Fukunaga. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

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Cary Fukunaga to Direct The Alienist

Cary FukunagaThe entertainment industry is buzzing with the news today that Cary Fukunaga, Emmy Award winning director of True Detective, will direct and executive produce the eagerly anticipated television drama series inspired by The Alienist, first announced by Paramount Television and Anonymous Content in April/May of last year. Oscar winning writer and producer Eric Roth (Forrest Gump) and Oscar nominated writer and director Hossein Amini (The Wings of the Dove) have also been named as executive producers. It is reported that Hossein Amini has written the pilot, and will go on to write the series.

Paramount Television’s President Amy Powell and Anonymous Content’s Steve Golin and Rosalie Swedlin were quoted by Variety on this exciting development:

“‘The Alienist‘ is a fascinating and distinctive, fast-paced psychological thriller that is wonderfully evocative of the unrivaled Gilded Age of New York City,” said Paramount Television President Amy Powell. “Cary Fukunaga’s unique vision and ability to render compelling, distinctive and superbly atmospheric direction is the perfect voice for this television series. We are thrilled to have not only Cary’s expert direction, but also the creativity, imagination and storytelling abilities of the supremely talented Eric Roth and Hossein Amini.”

“We are thrilled that Paramount has entrusted us and our brilliant creative dream team — Eric Roth, Hossein Amini, and Cary Fukunaga — to bring this much beloved, bestselling novel to the screen,” said Anonymous Content’s Steve Golin and Rosalie Swedlin, who will also executive produce the series. “The multi-episodic format will enable us to do justice to the complexity of Caleb Carr’s storytelling and his vivid and detailed portrait of late 19th century New York in all its splendor and grittiness.”

Photo Credit: “Cary Fukunaga2009” by Johan GunnarssonFlickr: Cary Fukunaga. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.