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Posted at 07:58 PM ET, 03/14/2013

Ang Lee to direct FX pilot from ‘Homeland’ creator


Best Director winner Ang Lee accepts the trophy at the Oscars. (ROBYN BECK - AFP/GETTY IMAGES)
Academy Award-winning director Ang Lee will make his TV directorial debut on the pilot for News Corp’s FX’s new drama series “Tyrant.”

That’s quite a coup for FX, given that it’s Lee’s first project since “Life of Pi,” for which he won this year’s best-director Academy Awards. In case you missed that point, the network used words like “revered” to describe Lee, who also won an Oscar for directing “Brokeback Mountain.”

Not coincidentally, “Life of Pi” was distributed by News Corp’s Fox.

“Tyrant,” about an American family drawn into the workings of a turbulent Middle Eastern nation, was created by Gideon Raff (“Homeland”), whose Israeli series “Prisoners of War” was the source material for “Homeland.”

Howard Gordon (“Homeland”) and Craig Wright (“Lost”) “developed” the new FX series.

Raff is an Emmy and Golden Globe winner; Gordon is an Emmy and Golden Globe winner; Wright is only Emmy-nominated.

Lee wins.

Which means, Lee also gets to be an exec producer of “Tyrant”!

Lee’s not the first director to migrate from big screen to small after winning an Oscar. Kathryn Bigelow won an Oscar for “Hurt Locker” and then signed on to direct the pilot for HBO’s “The Miraculous Year,” about a New York family as seen through the lens of a self-destructive Broadway composer — though Bigelow was not a TV directing virgin, like Lee, having previously directed episodes of “Homicide: Life on the Street,” and “Karen Sisco.”

Back when FX first ordered the “Tyrant” pilot, it was described as a drama series about an Arab state dictator who dies, leaving his American son to head the country. Thursday, FX described it far more vaguely: the story of an unassuming American family drawn into the workings of a turbulent Middle Eastern nation.

By  |  07:58 PM ET, 03/14/2013

 
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