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TNT Takes Darabont’s
L.A. NOIR To Series!!

Published at: Oct. 17, 2012, 2:23 p.m. CST by hercules

I am – Hercules!!

I guess TNT saw the ratings for “Walking Dead” this weekend!

Weird thing is, this seems to tell the same story that the fast-approaching motion picture “Gangster Squad” does.

"L.A. Noir" reunites former "Walking Dead" mastermind Frank Darabont with former "Walking Dead" players Jon Bernthal and Jeffrey DeMunn.

Look! Press release!

Oct. 17, 2012

TNT Greenlights Frank Darabont Crime Drama

Based on Acclaimed John Buntin Book L.A. Noir

TNT has greenlit a new series from executive producers Frank Darabont (The Walking Dead, The Shawshank Redemption), Michael De Luca (The Social Network, Moneyball) and Elliot Webb (Tall Time Tales). TNT has ordered a total of six episodes for the untitled project, which is being produced by TNT Originals.

Based on the critically acclaimed book L.A. Noir: The Struggle for the Soul of America’s Most Seductive City by John Buntin, the story chronicles the epic battle between Los Angeles Police Chief William Parker and mobster Mickey Cohen. Alissa Phillips (Moneyball) of Michael De Luca Productions serves as co-executive producer. Darabont wrote and directed the pilot. The show, which will air on TNT and Turner networks around the world, will be distributed by TBS International outside of the United States and Canada.

This new series tells the true story of a decades-long conflict between the Los Angeles Police Department, under the determined leadership of Police Chief William Parker, and ruthless criminal elements led by Mickey Cohen, a one-time boxer who rose to the top of L.A.'s criminal world. The series is a fast-paced crime drama set in Los Angeles during the 1940s and '50s. It's a world of glamorous movie stars, powerful studio heads, returning war heroes, a powerful and corrupt police force and an even more dangerous criminal network determined to make L.A. its West Coast base.

The new drama stars Jon Bernthal (The Walking Dead) as Joe Teague, an ex-Marine now working as an LAPD cop in an era rampant with police corruption. Jeffrey DeMunn (The Walking Dead, The Shawshank Redemption) plays Det. Hal Morrison, who heads up the LAPD's new mob squad, with Jeremy Strong (The Happening, Lincoln) as Det. Mike Hendry, Morrison's second in command. Neal McDonough (Captain America, Desperate Housewives) is Capt. William Parker, Teague's boss who is determined to weed out corruption and bring down Mickey Cohen. And Milo Ventimiglia (Heroes) plays Ned Stax, who fought alongside Teague during World War II but who now works as a lawyer with connections to the mob.

The series also stars Ron Rifkin (Alias, L.A. Confidential) as Los Angeles Mayor Fletcher Bowron, who makes it his mission to clean up corruption in city government; Pihla Viitala (Tears of April) as Anya, the head bartender at Bunny's on Central Avenue, the West Coast center of the African-American jazz scene; and Alexa Davalos (Clash of the Titans, The Mist) as Jasmine, a beautiful woman whose past has come back to haunt her.

In the pilot, Simon Pegg (Star Trek, Shaun of the Dead) guest-stars as Hecky Nash, a third-rate comedian and mob hanger-on.

“This series is an intense, exciting drama that takes viewers back to a truly fascinating time in the history of Los Angeles," said Michael Wright, president, head of programming for TNT, TBS and Turner Classic Movies (TCM). "Frank Darabont, Michael De Luca and Elliott Webb have delivered an outstanding opening episode that evokes the time and place in stunning detail. Together with a pitch-perfect ensemble cast and top-notch production crew, they have woven an engrossing tale of heroism in the face of greed and corruption. We're very excited to be working with such talented storytellers in bringing this project to life."

This announcement marks the latest move in TNT's ambitious strategy to expand to a year-round model of original programming. After dominating the original programming charts this past summer with five returning hits and the three most-watched new series, TNT is ready to build on that success this winter with a slate of six original series. The lineup includes the return of the hit dramas Rizzoli & Isles, Leverage and Dallas; a new season of the critically acclaimed Southland; the premiere of Monday Mornings, a powerful new medical drama from David E. Kelley and Dr. Sanjay Gupta; and the launch of the gripping unscripted series Boston's Finest, from executive producer Donnie Wahlberg.

The show, which will air on TNT and Turner networks around the world, will be distributed by TBS International outside of the United States and Canada. 

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Readers Talkback

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  • Oct. 17, 2012, 2:28 p.m. CST

    Sounds like "Crime Story"

    by jim

    Sounds like something I'd enjoy watching.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 2:31 p.m. CST

    Very imaginative title.

    by Silv

    Only cost them how many millions to think up?

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 2:46 p.m. CST

    The best part of this story

    by Speedbumped

    is seeing that Southland is still in the schedule.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 3:27 p.m. CST

    This will NEVER work out, and do you know why...?

    by captaincosmos

    ...Because I want it to SO fucking badly! I've been fascinated with the history of L.A. in the 1930s-40s ever since I read my first Raymond Chandler book ages ago. After moving to the City, I became even more enamoured with its incredible backstory. I read the book this is based on and there is so much material for them to cover, if they choose to. Truly epic, covering both Cohen's and Parker's ascensions to power, the shaping of L.A., the arrival of the Mob and the transformation of the LAPD under Parker's iron fist. And the fact that they're using the little known mecca of music and mischief that was Central Avenue as a location is awesome. Shows someone's doing their homework. But... past experience has taught me that these type of period pieces, especially as a series, are really tough to pull off and honestly, Darabont can be kinda hit or miss with me. Plus, it Gangster Squad tanks at the B.O., you can bet TNT's support for this show will shrivel up faster than my tallywhacker at briss ceremony on a cold winter's day. Still, I'll remain cautiously hopeful for this one.

  • and guest starring Simon Pegg??

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 4:51 p.m. CST

    bernthal was great as shane..ill give it a chance

    by mike

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 5:02 p.m. CST

    Jesus, Jon Bernthal is a terrible actor.

    by sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch

    Um, did everyone not collectively cheer when his character was killed off on the Walking Dead? And.. not just because his character was a rampaging asshole, but because the squinting, neck cocked, redneck skunk backed into a corner schtick was pretty one-note, repetitive, and got old REAL QUICK? Am I alone on this? That dude was a twitchy, irritating mess. Luckily I don't watch Darabont for Lee Strasberg style acting, I watch it for Rod Serling-style broad strokes, like a B film, or a radio play. So maybe he'll bring that to this show, it's one of the things he does best. Dirt and noir. So we'll see.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 7:43 p.m. CST

    Bernthal is a great actor..here's why

    by sunwukong86

    Any actor who can make you despise their character know's what they're doing. Bernthal wanted you to hate Shane, did his job didn't he?

  • I watched LA Confidential again recently, to erase my memories of Pearce as Weyland. It didn't work. So I'll watch a triple bill, LA Con, Memento, and The Proposition. Surely that's gotta help!

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 9:54 p.m. CST

    Bernthal is great, Darabont might be the weak link

    by Humie Bubbie

    Walking Dead got stronger once he was gone. Mazzara really seems to have been the right choice. I think what works in the WD comics, the slow family and survival drama, just doesn't work in the medium of television. Darabont is a brilliant filmmaker, but TV is a different medium altogether.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 10:11 p.m. CST

    No, I really did hate his acting.

    by sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch

    Like I said, it was distractingly twitchy. I was watching a man act. And act hard. He spent so much time with his neck cocked that I'm surprised he didn't end up stuck that way. Squint, twitch, cock your head, act ludicrously appalled as though you are spitting out emotions in some exaggerated Tennessee Williams dinner theatre. Like I said, I don't consider The Walking Dead 'gripping realistic drama' or anything very lofty like that at all. I think its very cheap manipulative B movie pulp. In the best way. It certainly stumbles into art in its best moments, but to me its old-fashioned Twilight Zone/ Romero dystopia, and the weathered farmhouse tonality wouldn't be possible without those very obvious fingerprints on its DNA. I got a lot of pleasure out of chuckling at Bernthal's hammy acting... But... I wouldn't be surprised if that's part of why Darabont hired him. That over-the-top B movie pathos is part of the fun.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 10:16 p.m. CST

    a powerful new medical drama from David E. Kelley and Dr. Sanjay Gupta

    by sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch

    Eat shit you corporate shills.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 10:21 p.m. CST

    Hope nobody gets shot between now and next September...

    by Nasty In The Pasty

    ...or they'll have to re-shoot the ENTIRE SERIES.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 11:02 p.m. CST

    re "Darabont might be the weak link"

    by Hercules

    The three-time Oscar-nominee who wrote and directed "The Shawshank Redemption," "The Green Mile" and "The Mist"? http://www.aintitcool.com/node/38781

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 11:27 p.m. CST

    sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch is right

    by Mugato5150

    He kept doing his DeNiro impression. I kept having to hold back from pissing off everyone in the room by repeatedly saying You talkin' to me? Whenever he was mugging for the camera. The other guy from TWD, Dale too. He always has that wide eyed look on his puss. He and Lori should have had a surprised look staring contest. That would make a funny animated gif actually.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 11:45 p.m. CST

    Jeebus, have movie geeks fallen so low, no LA Confidential love?!

    by Hardboiled Wonderland

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 12:02 a.m. CST

    No... LA Confidential

    by sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch

    is a brilliant piece of cinema. I remember LOVING that movie when it came out. Granted its been a long time, but what a cool, surreal noir. Deserved its Best Picture statue.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 12:07 a.m. CST

    sorry. best Screenplay.

    by sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch

    same thing. brilliant movie. and Herc, don't try and pretend Darabont's shit isn't a little hamfisted. all the love for Shawshank... its a lovely movie, painted in VERY, very broad strokes, but it in no way even approaches the depth and power of the original King novella.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 12:15 a.m. CST

    Dale from TWD

    by sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch

    He's in quite a few Darabont/ and King projects. In fact, Darabont seems to have a rotating stable of actors he likes to use. Character actors, at least in his stuff that's how they play. It's melodrama. His potboiler approach can be a little much sometimes. It definitely slowed down the action on his season of TWD, and might have been one of the reasons he was let go. Having said that, I am a fan. The Mist was brilliant. And this guy also helped write Elm Street 2? Yeah, he's got major geek cred. Platinum. And the older I get, the more I can appreciate the theatricality and heightened B movie vibe of his stuff. The prison movies make me kinda giggle, though. But I'd probably watch Grey's Anatomy if it had zombie decapitations and black dudes with superpowers, by the same token

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 12:19 a.m. CST

    and Hercules

    by sasquatch_with_a_swatch_watch

    what does "3 time Oscar nominee mean" besides a lot of Holywood establishment horseshit It's not a barometer of quality. It's status, and has no bearing at all. They've given Oscars to Akiva Goldsman movies. Hitchcock never won an Oscar. Don't believe the shiny hype.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 12:32 a.m. CST

    FLASH: L.A. NOIR fires Darabont!

    by Nintendarth

    Just kidding.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 1:05 a.m. CST

    Darabont might be the weak link.

    by brokentusk

    Only on AICN, folks.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 2:22 a.m. CST

    DAVID KELLEY..DO AN ALAN SHORE SPIN-OFF!

    by Pixelsmack

    Enough of this bullshit. Give the people what they want!

  • Seriously.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 2:51 a.m. CST

    NO MICKEY COHEN CASTING, BUT MAYBE TOM JANE AS BUGSY SIEGEL

    by Mullah Omar

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/frank-darabont-la-noir-tnt-thomas-jane-hung-331766 Kinda weird that there's no Mickey Cohen casting info. Maybe going for a truly big name and it's still under discussion?

  • That would be awesome. When I saw Simon Pegg was there, I wondered if he played Roddenberry...

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 6:55 a.m. CST

    Love LA Confidential, massively excited about this

    by i_got_worms

    The cast looks solid to me, just hoping the Cohen casting is up to scratch.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 7:04 a.m. CST

    Who do you think will play Mickey Cohen?

    by Hardboiled Wonderland

    I'm stumped, can't think of who it might be.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 7:38 a.m. CST

    I will watch the premire and then decide from there

    by ATARI

    what a concept, I know

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 8:03 a.m. CST

    Would Rather see La Confidential: The Series

    by Smerdyakov

    With Bernthal in the Russell Crowe part.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 9:46 a.m. CST

    @pixelsmack "DAVID KELLEY..DO AN ALAN SHORE SPIN-OFF!"

    by Quarantined

    He already did... it was called Boston Legal.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 10:28 a.m. CST

    shermdawg -- agreed

    by DrAstroZoom

    I was horribly disappointed when I realized this wasn't a screen version of "L.A. Noire."

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 1:03 p.m. CST

    Darabont's the weak link

    by Laserhead

    Still don't understand the geek love for this guy. I really like 'The Mist', but the rest of his films are sentimental pulp. He's a hack. Fits perfectly with TNT, though.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 1:35 p.m. CST

    Herc, when does Oscar winner mean great showrunner?

    by Humie Bubbie

    A feature film is a sprint, a TV series is a marathon. There is a lot of overlap in the skill set required to do the job, but just because Darabont has made great films does not mean he knows how to guide a TV series. The rhythm and pacing are different. Mazzara has had 14 years writing on TV shows from what I can see and 10 as a story editor or producer. That's experience that counts in showrunning. Darabont failed to see what could keep an audience engaged for a long run- I'm sure we all have enough zombie-loving friends who dropped the show to attest to that.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 5:39 p.m. CST

    Remember the LA Confidential pilot?

    by aTwenty7thLetter

    The one with Kiefer Sutherland? Awful. So, so terrible. I'm not saying that has anything to do with how LA Noir will turn out. Just acknowledging they already tried it for those wishing for an LA Confidential series.

  • Oct. 20, 2012, 3:32 a.m. CST

    Film noir + zombies!

    by lv_426

    No one has done that yet. The night was getting hot and heavy and the dead were at the front door. I couldn't sleep... The city was whispering into my ear. Now that I was awake, the case started spinning in my mind. This was a doozy. Vampire attack no doubt, but why? It wasn't your average suck and run. Then there was the dame. Blondes with big knockers always got my blood pumping. I got up and stumbled to the fridge. No booze. No ice cream. Just a jug of moldy milk and a cracked egg oozing its yellow guts out all over the place. I was gonna have to make a trip to the corner market... Maybe stop at Alice's for some pumpkin pie and coffee. If only the dead could keep normal hours like the rest of us. Can't a guy go out in the middle of the night for some grub without having to deal with all the skids and suckheads? Without having to worry about a pack of shamblers lunging out at ya from some dark alleyway? The city... God do I love her and hate her at the same time.