If this project sounds familiar, but not exactly the way you remember it happening before, it’s because the last we heard of a Utopia remake (of the UK series), it was at HBO with David Fincher. It goes all the way back to 2014, in fact, when HBO signed Fincher to an overall deal and picked up the Utopia remake as a six episode straight-to-series order. But the project, which had Rooney Mara starring, reportedly went way over budget, and after a year, HBO’s relationship with Fincher ended with his projects there having stalled out.
Now, THR is reporting that the Utopia remake has moved over to Amazon, where Gone Girl author and screenwriter Gillian Flynn will serve as showrunner. When Utopia was with HBO and Fincher, Flynn was a producer and also hired to write the U.S. adaptation. Now, she will be credited as the sole creator, EP, and showrunner of the series. This is all part of an overall deal Amazon has secured with Flynn, with Utopia (which is now a nine episode order) serving as her first project.
For those unfamiliar with the British series, Dennis Kelly‘s Utopia “revolves around a group of young adults who meet online and are mercilessly hunted by a shadowy deep state organization. After they come in to possession of a near mythical cult underground graphic novel, they discover the conspiracy theories in the comic’s pages may actually be real and are forced in to the dangerous, unique and ironic position of saving the world.”
Flynn said of the project,
“Utopia is pure creative catnip to me. Dennis Kelly’s show blew my mind, and he has been so incredibly generous in letting me crack open his world and play around in it and make it my own weird, wild place. Utopia is all about exploring resonant issues within dark, twisted storytelling—it’s a series that’s urgent and current and a little holy-crap! but a hell of a lot of fun.”
Under the mandate of trying to find “the next Game of Thrones” from CEO Jeff Bezos (but who isn’t these days?), Amazon is in the process of adapting a number of high-profile series, including their hugely expensive Lord of the Rings series. Utopia doesn’t have a premiere date as of yet, but we’ll update you with more as it happens.