Bastards, the eight-episode series starring Richard Gere based on the Israeli drama Nevelot, will not move forward at Apple’s forthcoming Apple TV+ streaming service.
Picked up straight to series late last year, Gere was set to star as one of two elderly Vietnam vets and best friends who find their monotonous lives upended when a woman they both loved 50 years ago is killed by a car. Their lifelong regrets and secrets collide with their resentment of today’s self-absorbed millennials and the duo then go on a shooting spree…
Howard Gordon and Warren Leight were originally set to exec produce the dark drama based on the Israeli format… Gordon and Leight collaborated on two scripts and, sources say, were met with notes from Apple about the show’s tone of vigilante justice. Sources say Gordon did not want to focus on the larger metaphor of friendship between the two Vietnam vets and wanted to focus on the darker elements of the series, with Fox 21 executives backing the veteran producer. Leight departed shortly afterward and Apple, which multiple sources note is looking for aspirational programming, wanted to ensure the series was focused on the heart and emotion of the central friendship.
Apple and Gordon/Fox 21 could not come to a middle ground and the tech company opted instead to release the project and pay a sizable financial penalty… It’s unclear if the dark drama — poised to have been Gere’s highest profile TV role — will find a new home.
MacDailyNews Take: Apple TV+’s pre-launch pejorative, “Expensive NBC,” just got burnished. Hopefully, Netflix or some other services will pick it up in short order.