A bestselling cartel epic is set to make the leap from page to screen with "The Border." Deadline reports that a series based on Don Winslow's super-popular "Cartel Trilogy" is in the works at FX with a pilot deal. The 720-page tome "The Border" is actually the third book in the pulpy, epic crime novel series, following "The Cartel" and "The Power of the Dog" (a name that wouldn't work for the new series, since it was just used for Jane Campion's own Oscar-winning literary adaptation).
Winslow's trilogy concluded with "The Border" in 2019, and it was only a matter of time before the story about the failed war on drugs made it to the small screen. Now, fans of the series and newcomers alike have an adaptation to look forward to — one with a talented team behind the camera. Here's everything we know about "The Border" so far:
When And Where To Watch The Border
"The Border" is still in the early stages: according to Deadline, its pilot is set to film in Mexico in 2023. At the moment, the series only has a pilot order as opposed to a full series order, which means it'll still need to earn that first season pickup before it makes its way to audiences. That being said, when all is said and done "The Border" should premiere on FX channel, the former home of similarly gritty crime dramas like "The Shield" and "Sons of Anarchy."
The network seems like a great fit for the series, based as it is on a series of dark, violent books that NPR once called "Shakespeare for our times." Cord-cutters should also be able to watch the series through Hulu, which typically streams new FX series the day after they air on linear cable. There's no word yet on when you'll be able to tune in to "The Border," but we'll keep you posted as updates arrive.
What We Think The Border Will Be About
"The Border" is based on the third and final book in Winslow's "Cartel Trilogy," though all three books follow several of the same key characters across multiple decades. Here's part of the official plot synopsis for "The Power of the Dog," the first in the series, via Penguin Random House:
"Art Keller is an obsessive DEA agent. The Barrera brothers are heirs to a drug empire. Nora Hayden is a jaded teenager who becomes a high-class hooker. Father Parada is a powerful and incorruptible Catholic priest. Callan is an Irish kid from Hell's Kitchen who grows up to be a merciless hit man. And they are all trapped in the world of the Mexican drug Federación."
If this sounds cliched, that's apparently part of Winslow's whole deal. The "Savages" author is widely acclaimed for the apparently heavily-researched saga, which takes familiar tropes and turns them into something "operatic" and "visceral," according to NPR. This isn't dime-a-dozen pulp fiction; The New York Times also praised the series, calling the second installment "a big, sprawling, ultimately stunning crime tableau."
By the third book, Winslow wiped out a good chunk of his core cast and took the story four decades past its initial 1970s starting point. "The Border" follows a version of DEA agent Keller who's been through the wringer and ends up on the front lines of the heroin epidemic. It's unclear as of yet whether the series will incorporate the stories from all three books, but Deadline lists Winslow among the producing team adapting the story for television, so it will no doubt include some of the author's artistic signatures.
What We Know About The Border Cast And Crew
"The Border" has already found a pair of showrunners and writers in "Damages" co-creator Daniel Zelman and "Avatar: The Way of Water" co-writer Shane Salerno. The pair will executive produce the project alongside Winslow, Diego Gutierrez, Jayro Bustamente, and Scott Free. Bustamente, who directed 2019's acclaimed Guatemalan horror film "La Llorona," is set to direct the pilot, per Deadline. Finally, Anabel Hernández is set to serve as a consulting producer. I'm especially excited to see a Guatemalan filmmaker on board, as the second book in the series, "The Cartel," takes place in Guatemala.
The actor playing Art Keller will be a familiar face for frequent FX viewers; he'll be played by none other than E.J. Bonilla, who portrayed CIA agent Raymond Waters in the series "The Old Man" just this year. "Normal People" and "Sanditon" star Frank Blake is set to play assassin Sean Callan, while "Amsterdam" actor Sebastián Buitrón and "Selena: The Series" and "Better Call Saul" alum Luis Bordonada will play the Barrera brothers. Finally, Annie Shapiro is set to take on the Nora role. The books have an even larger cast of characters, so we'll keep you posted as more cast announcements inevitably arrive.
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The post The Border: Everything We Know So Far About The FX Adaptation Of Don Winslow's Book Series appeared first on /Film.