There are some directors you naturally picture trying to conquer all forms of media. But Joel and Ethan Coen? Not so much. While their work is definitely beloved and they create movies with fully realised worlds that are seemingly perfect for adaptation, they’ve usually been happy pushing ahead on their own track. So it’s a little bit of an eyebrow-raiser to find that they’ve struck a deal to bring Fargo to TV.
While Joel and Ethan will be executive producers on the project, don’t go thinking this means they’ll wait a couple of years to cook up a new film. Instead, the heavy lifting on any Fargo series will be put in by telly veteran Noah Hawley, who cut his teeth writing on forensics drama Bones and went on to create short-lived shows The Unusuals (a much-missed cop drama) and My Generation (we’ll skip over that one).
It’s still early days for the idea, but it’ll apparently loosely be based on the 1996 film, which saw Frances McDormand’s pregnant small-town sheriff Marge Gunderson trailing two criminals (Steve Buscemi and Peter Stomare) hired by used car dealer Jerry Lundegaard (William H Macy) to kidnap his wife.
You’ve got to wonder if they’ll even try to put the Gunderson character in the eventual TV show – does any actress want to go up against McDormand’s iconic, Oscar-winning performance?
This isn’t even the first time a Fargo show has been worked up, as MGM tried raiding the ol’ back catalogue in 2003 for a series that went to pilot starring The Sopranos / Nurse Jackie’s Edie Falco.
As for the show itself, it’s still in the development cocoon at the FX network, and it remains to be seen if it bursts out any time soon.