At the Television Critics Association panel this week, it was confirmed that a pilot for Guillermo Del Toro’s (The Devil’s Backbone, Pacific Rim) The Strain was green lit by FX CEO John Landgraf, as well as a plan for a 3-5 season run. The series is based off of del Toro and Chuck Hogan’s vampire novel trilogy of the same title and tells the story of Dr. Ephraim Goodweather, head of the CDC Canary Team in NYC as his team is tasked with investigating a viral outbreak with ties to vampirism. As the strain spreads, the survivors wage war for the fate of humanity as the battle becomes more personal and more tolling by the hour.
According to Deadline, Landgraf is quoted as saying, “What if a television show could be just the length that is optimal for that story?” and he goes on to say that the series will be, “39-65 episodes, no less, no more”. The Strain has only been ordered for a pilot episode, but the writing staff has drafted five scripts and a series pickup is imminent. This business model may keep the show more in line with the actual storyline of the novel and would prevent the show from wandering down unnecessary narrative avenues and stop plot holes from dangling above the narrative in the form of unsolved questions and untended character arcs. Furthermore, FX seems to be the right network to bring The Strain to life, considering it is second only to AMC and Pay Cable in terms of its portrayal of graphic violence and language on primetime television.
Guillermo Del Toro will direct The Strain pilot from a script he and Hogan co-wrote. Carlton Cuse (Lost, Bates Motel) will executive produce alongside del Toro and will serve as showrunner, overseeing the potential series with del Toro. Gary Ungar, longtime producing partner of Del Toro and Hogan, also serves as executive producer. Corey Stoll from House of Cards will portray Goodweather, with Kevin Durand, Sean Astin, Richard Sammel, Lauren Lee Smith, Jack Kesy, Jonathan Hyde, John Hurt, Miguel Gomez, Robert Maillet and Mia Maestro all in supporting roles.
Keep the dial tuned to DiaboliqueMagazine.com for more on Guillermo Del Torro and The Strain!
– By Robert Vaughn
Robert Vaughn is a graduate of Montclair State University, NJ, with a B.F.A. in Filmmaking. Throughout his time in the program, he worked on various aspects of pre, pro and post-production. Writing has always been a favorite of his and he feels this “favoritism” shows in his work. Various professors, students, directors and actors have praised his writing ability. On top of writing for Diabolique, he has written for TV, written/co-written feature films for So Real? Entertainment and is currently working on a feature length dark comedy script of his own. Follow him on twitter: @rvaughn881