Machine, HBO team on ‘Laramie’

Kaufman to pen/helm pay TV take on Shepard play

NEW YORK — HBO and Good Machine are going ahead with an original pay TV movie based on “The Laramie Project,” the off-Broadway play about the brutal 1998 murder of gay college student Matthew Shepard in Wyoming.

Roy Gabay, one of the producers of “Laramie Project,” said he took the play to HBO because the network “treated with respect” the movie adaptation of Margaret Edson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Wit.” Gabay is one of the producers of “Wit,” which Emma Thompson will star in and Mike Nichols will direct for HBO.

Moises Kaufman, the director and one of the writers of “Laramie,” will write and direct the HBO picture, which Gabay said will be “a full-fledged movie, not a documentary.” Gabay is referring to the fact that the play is presentational in style, with many of the 60 characters addressing the audience directly, their words derived from interviews conducted by Kaufman and the eight actors who portray all of the characters onstage.

The eight actors, who with Kaufman are part of the Tectonic Theater Project, will participate in the movie, Gabay said. An HBO spokeswoman declined to comment on “Laramie Project.”

Gabay said he sought out Good Machine because “it’s a New York-based company and it’ll help to facilitate the production process for the movie.” Good Machine execs Ted Hope, Anne Carey and Ross Katz will shepherd “Laramie.”

“It’s too early in the process to say exactly what shape the script will take,” Kaufman said. “But there are between 50 and 60 roles, and a number of TV and film stars have come to the play. Some of those roles will be very significant.”

Gabay said there’s no timetable for the start of shooting “but I’d like to get it onto a fast track,” even if that would mean suspending production of the play until Good Machine completes the movie.

More TV

  • Another-Life-Netflix

    TV Review: 'Another Life'

    Netflix’s new series “Another Life” brings Katee Sackhoff back into space, a decade after the conclusion of “Battlestar Galactica,” the beloved series on which she starred. But her new series looks more like the rest of the fare on the SyFy network — it’s inelegantly made and operates less in the realm of ideas than [...]

  • Vince McMahon WWE

    Vince McMahon Out of Excuses for WWE Woes

    When World Wrestling Entertainment reported its sluggish first-quarter performance in April, CEO Vince McMahon blamed it on “superstar absences,” the temporary sidelining of many of his star grapplers due to injuries accumulated in 2018 and early 2019. But now that WWE is on the verge of releasing its second-quarter numbers on July 25, McMahon is [...]

  • How Cooking-Travel Shows Are Changing TV

    How Cooking-Travel Shows Are Changing TV

    Toyo hunches over his street food stove, cooking tuna with a blow torch, stopping to light his cigarette with it and produce a cheeky grin. The Japanese chef, who owns a roadside stand in the city of Osaka, is one of many highlighted in the Netflix series “Street Food.” Over the course of 30 minutes, [...]


    SAG-AFTRA Leaders Approve Proposal for New Film-TV Contract

    The SAG-AFTRA national board has approved proposals for a successor deal to its master contract covering feature film and primetime television — a key step in the upcoming negotiations cycle with companies. The board approved the package Saturday with the performers union declining to reveal any specifics — its usual policy. The board established the wages [...]

  • Shannen Doherty'Jennie Garth: A Little Bit

    Shannen Doherty Joins 'Riverdale' Season 4 in Luke Perry Tribute

    “Riverdale” is planning to make a special tribute to Luke Perry. The show’s executive producer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa announced at Comic-Con that Shannen Doherty, Perry’s longtime friend and “Beverly Hills 90210” co-star, will guest star in the season 4 premiere. The tribute episode will “reflect Perry’s enduring legacy and the indelible imprint his character” Fred Andrews [...]

  • Supernatural CW

    'Supernatural' Team Gets Emotional Final Season Sendoff at Comic-Con

    The cast and creative team of “Supernatural” bid a fond farewell to the attendees of San Diego Comic-Con on Sunday. At the show’s final panel in the gargantuan Hall H, the team thanked the fans for all of their support over the years as the series prepares to enter its final season. “I’m trying not [...]

  • Alicia Rodis photographed by Alicia Rodis

    SAG-AFTRA Moves to Standardize Guidelines for Intimacy Coordinators

    SAG-AFTRA is moving to standardize guidelines for intimacy coordinators as part of an effort to establish policies for union members when their work involves nudity and simulated sex. “Our goal is to normalize and promote the use of intimacy coordinators within our industry,” said SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris. “Intimacy coordinators provide an important safety net for [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content