Utopia was one of the weirdest – and best – shows to come out of the UK last year. So it seems only natural that America would take an interest, especially given the series’ US-friendly graphic novel-obsession subject matter and twisty conspiracy plot. HBO has been developing the idea for a while and has just confirmed that David Fincher and Gone Girl writer Gillian Flynn will tackle making it.
Utopia, in case you didn’t see the Channel 4 original, set things in motion with the discovery of a manuscript for a legendary graphic novel known as The Utopia Experiments, long shrouded in mystery. When a small group of previously unconnected people unite in their shared interest, things take a much darker turn.
Because they are by no means the only ones interested in the manuscript. Targeted swiftly and relentlessly by a murderous organisation known as The Network, the terrified group are left with only one option if they want to survive: they have to run.
You can understand why Fincher, who jumped into TV in a big way with Netflix’s House Of Cards, might be drawn to it. And at HBO, like the streaming service, he’ll have the freedom and flexibility to take things as far as the UK version.
Flynn, who adapted her novel Gone Girl for Fincher’s latest film (due out on October 3) has clearly meshed well with the director’s sensibilities, and will write at least the pilot episode, which he’s set to shoot. Utopia creator Dennis Kelly has an executive producer credit, and he’s just finished making the second series for Channel 4.