Martin Freeman is playing Lester Nygaard, a downtrodden insurance salesman with a nagging wife, whose life is changed forever when a mysterious stranger named Lorne Malvo (Billy Bob Thornton) arrives in town and sets him on a destructive path. The Lester Nygaard character is similar to William H. Macy's Jerry Lundegaard in the original movie. The 10-episode series will follow an all-new true crime case with different characters, while retaining the same brand of humor and "Minnesota nice" aspects from the Oscar-winning movie.
My Generation creator Noah Hawley wrote the pilot script and is executive producing alongside Joel Coen, Ethan Coen, Warren Littlefield and Geyer Kosinski. Adam Bernstein is directing the pilot episode. Production is scheduled to begin next month in Calgary, with FX scheduling a spring 2014 premiere.
Martin Freeman most recently starred in The World's End and he returns as Bilbo Baggins this December in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. It hasn't been announced when he will go back to work on Season 4 of Sherlock, but there aren't expected to be any scheduling complications since production typically runs for only three weeks on the BBC series.