FX is on the right side of the “Lawman,” picking up 13 episodes of the Timothy Olyphant starrer.
Project, from “Boomtown” scribe Graham Yost, is centered around the character Raylan Givens, who appears in several works by Elmore Leonard including the novella “Fire in the Hole.” FX plans to launch the drama next spring.
Sony Pictures TV is behind the show, along with FX Prods. Yost, who wrote the pilot, will exec produce, along with Leonard, Sarah Timberman, Carl Beverly and Michael Dinner (who directed the pilot).
“Now the hard part begins, as we work to channel Elmore,” Yost said. “We’re all big fans of his, and want to bring that sensibility to the weekly show. Other people have tried — it’s not easy.”
In “Lawman” (originally titled “Fire in the Hole,” and likely to eventually get another title), Olyphant plays modern-day U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, whose old-style brand of law enforcement gets him in trouble with his bosses. As a result, he’s reassigned to cover the area where he grew up.
Yost said the show will spend a great deal of time on the villains — “Elmore comes up with great bad guys” — as well as map out Olyphant’s character.
“He’s an anachronism,” Yost said of Raylan Givens. “He wears a Stetson and truly sees himself as a marshal. We also feel that having the show set in Kentucky is fresh. It’s a part of the world that hasn’t been explored much in TV and is ripe with great characters.”
The “Lawman” pilot was shot in Pittsburgh and Miami, but Southern California will double for Kentucky in the series.
Yost said he hopes to bring Dinner and together meet with Leonard in the coming weeks,
“We’ll see if there’s anything we can take from his files,” Yost quipped.
FX Networks prexy-general manager John Landgraf announced the series order on Tuesday.
Olyphant most recently co-starred in FX’s “Damages” last season. “Lawman” also stars Nick Searcy, Jacob Pitts and Erica Tazel. Guest stars include Walton Goggins, Joelle Carter and Natalie Zea.
“Lawman” reps the 10th drama series ordered by FX and the seventh produced under its FX Prods. banner. For Sony, it joins other series produced for FX including “The Shield,” “Rescue Me” and “Damages.”