HBO riding surf wave

Nunn's 'surf noir' comes to smallscreen

HBO and David Milch are hitting the beach with author Kem Nunn.

Paybox execs are in discussions with Milch to pick up a one-hour pilot set in the world of surfing that Milch would write and exec produce. Nunn would co-write and co-exec produce.

In the same way Milch’s dark take on “Deadwood” is atypical of the Western genre, his untitled surfing project is said to take a more somber approach to its subject.

Writing partner Nunn is best known for having pioneered the “surf noir” — part surfer tall tale, part murder mystery — made famous in his novels “Tapping the Source” (an American Book Award nominee), “The Dogs of Winter” and “Tijuana Straits.” HBO project, however, will be an original work.

Howard Rosenman will also exec produce; Peter Spears will co-exec produce. Surf legend Herb “Herbie” Fletcher and wife Dibi are consulting producers on the project.

Milch is in the middle of a two-year production pact with HBO, under which he is continuing to work on “Deadwood” while developing new projects for the cabler.

Apart from the surf project, Milch is developing a police drama with “NYPD Blue” collaborator Bill Clark about the latter’s experiences as a rookie undercover cop.

Elsewhere on the drama front, HBO last week ordered the series “sexLife,” about couples with intimacy issues, from Gavin Polone’s Pariah.

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