Billy Ray – screenwriter for blockbusters “Captain Phillips” and “The Hunger Games” – has been tapped to create a television adaptation of an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel for HBO, according to THR.
“The Last Tycoon” was unfinished at the time of Fitzgerald’s death, and is a commentary on the early days of Hollywood. No doubt the studio is looking to capitalize on the recent box-office success of “The Great Gatsby”.
Described as a modern take on the classic concept of a Roman a clef, the series is inspired by the real-life film producer Irving Thalberg and studio-topper Louis B. Mayer; the story follows Monroe Stahr and his rise to power in old Hollywood and his subsequent conflict with mentor and studio head Pat Brady.
Although Stahr is touted as the show’s focal point, it will also delve into the violence, sex and fierce ambition of Hollywood in the 1930’s.
Ray will not only pen the script but has also signed on as executive producer; should the project move forward, he will also direct the pilot. Perri Kipperman, Josh Maurer, David Stern, Alix Witlin and Chris Keyser will all executive produce, with Keyser also set to serve as showrunner.