The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men creator Chuck Lorre is heading to Amazon with a new TV series adaption of Tom Wolfe's iconic 1987 novel The Bonfire of the Vanities. The show is being eyed as an eight-episode drama series which hails from Warner Bros. Television, where Chuck Lorre has an overall deal. The show has been in development for several months, and was initially shopped to cable outlets and other streaming services before it landed at Amazon Studios.
The Hollywood Reporter reveals that Margaret Nagle (Boardwalk Empire, Red Band Society) has come aboard to write the pilot script. The writer will also executive produce alongside Chuck Lorre, with author/political correspondent David Corn serving as a consultant. The series will be set in 1980s New York City, like the original novel, described as a drama series that explores "ambition, racism, social class, politics and greed."
The story will be told through the perspectives of three main characters, WASP bond trader Sherman McCoy, Jewish assistant district attorney Larry Kramer and British journalist Peter Fallow. The original story was first published in 27 different installments in Rolling Stone magazine, before going on to become a best-selling hit. The novel was adapted into a movie in 1990, with Tom Hanks playing Sherman McCoy, Bruce Willis playing Peter Fallow and F. Murray Abraham playing the Jewish district attorney, whose name was changed to Abe Weiss in the movie.
The movie, which also starred Melanie Griffith, Kim Cattrall, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Dunn, was a critical and commercial failure, only taking in $16 million at the box office. It hasn't been confirmed when casting may begin, or when Amazon plans to start production on this event series. This project will also mark a few different firsts for Chuck Lorre.
This series will not only mark the first foray into event series or miniseries programming, which has become more and more popular over the years, it will also be his first drama series, although he previously wrote one episode of CBS' CSI in 2008. Chuck Lorre has worked on classic sitcoms such as Roseanne, Grace Under Fire and Cybill before he started creating his own shows with Dharma & Greg, Two & a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory and Mom. Bonfire of the Vanities joins a slew of other reboots in development at other networks, such as The CW's Dynasty and The Lost Boys, MTV's War of the Worlds, ABC's Magnum P.I., CMT's Varsity Blues, Amazon's The Departed, TNT's Let the Right One In and L.A. Law, which doesn't have a network home quite yet.