Horton to exec produce, direct ‘Lonestar’

He'll shepherd Fox TV drama and nabs pilot deal

Director-actor Peter Horton will exec produce and helm Fox’s new drama “Lonestar.”

As part of his deal with 20th Century Fox TV and Fox, Horton has also landed a premium script commitment and deal to direct a pilot next season.

Horton will direct the first episode of “Lonestar” beyond the pilot. The helmer said he was struck by the depth of the show’s concept — about a con artist juggling two lives while scheming to clean out a wealthy Texas oil family.

“I rarely produce series that I didn’t direct the pilot,” Horton said. “But this is a unique show, especially for network TV. It’s so wonderfully constructed and says so much about what it means to be a human being.”

Kyle Killen created “Lonestar” and exec produces with Kerry Kohansky, Paul Weitz, Chris Keyser and Amy Lippman, as well as Horton. Marc Webb directed the pilot.

Show, which stars James Wolk, Adrianne Palicki and David Keith, is generating quite a bit of buzz among crix this summer.

“Lonestar” is set to shoot in Dallas. Horton said he plans to direct at least the first and last episodes of “Lonestar’s” initial order, and will remain focused on all 12 episodes.

Beyond that, Horton said he’s also looking forward to writing a script for the network and studio this year.

“(Fox Entertainment prexy) Kevin Reilly and I have been circling each other for some time, and looking for a real chance to do something together,” said Horton, who has spent most of his TV career both in front of and behind the camera at ABC and ABC Studios/Touchstone.

A busy Horton has also been collaborating with Josh Brand(“Mystery, Alaska”) on a number of projects — including the drama script “The Wall,” which the duo are about to shop.

Horton describes the project as ” ‘Chinatown’ in the future” — in which cities build enormous walls to protect their resources and maintain order. Project is set in Los Angeles.

Horton and Brand are also behind “Reconstruction,” a script set up at FX. Western centers on a border town picking up the pieces after the Civil War.

On the feature side, Horton is adapting the book “Coal River” about mining in the Appalachian mountains for Paul Haggis. “I can’t say I’m not busy,” Horton said.

Horton’s credits include “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Dirty Sexy Money,” “The Philanthropist” and “Six Degrees.” As an actor, he most recently appeared on “Life Unexpected” and “In Treatment.”

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