Journalist Hunter S. Thompson may be exploding onto your TV screen very soon. The life and times of the brilliant “gonzo” journalist is set to be portrayed in a new TV series, “Fear and Loathing,” from MGM Television and “Get Shorty” showrunner Davey Holmes. According to THR, MGM Television announced the project on Monday, which gets its name from one of Thompson’s best-loved stories, “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: A Savage Journey to the Heart of the American Dream.” This will be the first product of Holmes’ recent overarching deal with MGM TV.
Thompson was a larger-than-life figure with no room for playing things safe. The journalist was famous for founding gonzo journalism, in which the writer becomes a central figure in his own stories. He publicly trashed President Richard Nixon, led an unsuccessful campaign to become the sheriff of Pitkin County, Colorado, and had his ashes shot out of a cannon during his funeral. Friend Johnny Depp (“Pirates of the Caribbean” series) played Thompson in “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas,” the 1998 film adaptation of Thompson’s time riding with the Hells Angels biker gang.
Holmes’ previously worked on “Pushing Daisies,” “Awake,” “Shameless,” and “In Treatment.” His current series, “Get Shorty,” is the TV adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s novel of the same name. The story was previously made famous by the 1995 film adaptation, which starred Gene Hackman (“The Royal Tenenbaums”), Rene Russo (“Thor”), John Travolta (“American Crime Story”) and Danny DeVito (“It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”). “Fear and Loathing” will be taking pointers from “Get Shorty’s” leap to television, following in its footsteps from hit film to hit TV series.
If “Fear and Loathing” is greenlit, Holmes will split showrunning duties with Oscar nominee Bob Nelson (“The Confirmation”). Holmes said of partnering up with MGM TV for “Fear and Loathing”:
After resisting overall deals for years, I couldn’t be more excited or proud to be embracing this one. It’s a partnership with a studio that makes some of the most exciting television out there. I can’t say enough about the intelligence, daring creativity and overall support MGM has brought to our collaboration.
No casting details or premiere date have been released.