HBO places mini bet on six-hour ‘Corner’

Cabler's sophomore effort faces high expectations

HBO has greenlit production on six-hour mini “The Corner,” the cabler’s official followup to its 12-part miniseries “From Earth to the Moon,” exec-produced by Tom Hanks.

“The Corner,” to be helmed by Charles S. Dutton, is based on the non-fiction book “The Corner: A Year in the Life of an Inner-City Neighborhood,” by David Simon (also scribe of “Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets” on which the TV show is based) and Edward Burns.

The mini, slated for April, will chronicle a family’s struggles living in a drug-infested neighborhood.

As HBO’s sophomore effort to the critically acclaimed “From Earth to the Moon,” “The Corner” faces high expectations. HBO senior VP of programming Anne Thomopoulos says “The Corner” is “a much more personable movie, and totally different stylistically, defying comparisons.”

HBO original programming prexy Chris Albrecht is confident of the production, with Dutton no stranger to HBO, having directed the original movie “First Time Felon” and receiving an Emmy nomination for acting in “Oz.” Dutton also has exec-produced the mini “Laurel Avenue,” and will next be seen opposite Harrison Ford and Kristin Scott Thomas in “Random Hearts.”

“The Corner” stars Khandi Alexander (“News Radio,” “ER”) as Fran Boyd, the family’s mother who watches her ex-husband fight a heroin addiction while trying to raise her 15 year-old son among drug dealers.

Exec-producing the mini are Robert Colesberry (“The Devil’s Own,” “Mississippi Burning”), David Mills (“ER,” “NYPD Blue”) and the book’s co-author Simon.

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