The filmmaking brothers Joel and Ethan Coen will be adapting their Oscar-winning 1996 film “Fargo” into a television series for Fox’s FX network, with Billy Bob Thornton in the lead role, the network said on Friday.
“The miniseries will run for 10 episodes, FX said in a statement. The Coens will be executive producers.
The original movie was a black comedy of crime in a rural Midwestern town. It starred Frances McDormand and William H. Macy.
In the miniseries, Oscar-
winning actor Thornton, 57, will play Lorne Malvo, a character described by FX as “a rootless, manipulative man who meets a small town insurance salesman and sets him on a path of destruction.” New characters and a new case will be introduced in the dark comedy.
The show will be filmed in Canada, and the series is expected to premiere on the basic cable channel next spring.
The 1996 film won Oscars for best actress (McDormand, who is married to Joel Coen) and best screenplay (the Coen brothers). The film was included in the American Film Institute’s 100 Greatest American Movies list and inducted into the U.S. National Film Registry in 2006.
FX’s “Fargo” is the first major television project for the Coen brothers, who have made their name in the film industry with movies that include “The Big Lebowski,” “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” and 2007’s Oscar-winning “No Country for Old Men.”
“Fargo” is part of FX’s initiative to produce more miniseries and limited series through its production brand. It will join the network’s roster alongside upcoming series “Wayward Pines,” which will star Matt Dillon and be directed by M. Night Shyamalan.
FX Networks, a unit of 21st Century Fox, has become a home for critically acclaimed shows spanning drama and comedy, such as “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” “Sons of Anarchy” and Ryan Murphy’s Emmy-nominated series “American Horror Story.”