Leonardo DiCaprio is officially setting his sights on the small screen. The acclaimed actor has reportedly signed on to develop a new untitled Showtime drama that will explore the inner workings of the mafia.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, DiCaprio and the premium cable network have teamed with Ray Donovan writer Brett Johnson for the developing project, which is set in 1980s Brooklyn. The show will chronicle the decades-long relationship between an unstable mafia captain and a rogue federal agent, both of whom have violated the strict codes of their respective organizations. Through the eyes of the two characters, the potential series will explore the corrosive power that the Wall Street era had on both the mafia and the FBI.
DiCaprio is set to executive produce via his Appian Way production banner, alongside Appian’s production president Jennifer Davisson Killoran, Ray Donovan‘s Bryan Zuriff, Charles Pacheco, Jennifer Erwin and Dan Pearson. Johnson will also co-executive produce, in addition to writing the script.
While there’s no word on whether DiCaprio will actually appear in the series, the subject is certainly right up his alley. The star has a long history of exploring the complicated and often morally ambiguous relationship between lawbreakers and law enforcers (see Catch Me If You Can, The Departed, etc). The life of Wall Street’s rich and powerful is also a familiar topic for him, so it’s no wonder he was drawn to this project.
Between the subject matter, DiCaprio’s involvement and it’s home on an acclaimed network like Showtime, the series has prestige drama written all over it. It’s obviously way too early to know how the project will end up, but should it move forward at Showtime, it sounds like exactly the kind of show that will attract plenty of award season attention.
We’ll have to stay tuned to see how the series plays out (and if it could potentially put the famous non-Oscar-winner on the Emmy track). In the meantime, this isn’t the only television project that DiCaprio currently has in the works. In addition to the developing Showtime series, DiCaprio also recently teamed with Entertainment One to option the rights to Simon Toyne’s novel The Searcher, although no network is attached to the adaptation just yet. Earlier this year, he also signed a multi-year, first-look deal with Netflix to develop documentaries and docu-series centering on environmental issues.
While the actor seems to be shifting new attention to the small screen, he’s also keeping busy on the feature film side of the things. His latest film, the adventure drama The Revenant, is set to hit theaters in January. The movie, directed by Alejandro G. Innaritu, has earned a slew of positive buzz in the lead-up to its premiere, with many claiming this could be the project to finally get DiCaprio that elusive Oscar.
As for Showtime, DiCaprio’s mafia project would be the latest in a long line of esteemed dramas for the network. Should the series movie forward, it would join its roster of original programs, including The Affair, Homeland, Masters of Sex, Penny Dreadful, Shameless and the upcoming Wall Street-themed Billions.