Should the project go to series, it would mark Gyllenhaal’s first leading role in a television series. He will executive produce along with Riva Marker through their Nine Stories production banner along with Endeavor Content. Shteyngart will serve as co-writer and co-showrunner on the series along with Tom Spezialy.
In the series, narcissistic, self-deluded and hilariously divorced from the real world hedge fund manager Barry Cohen (Gyllenhaal) flees his family, his past, and the SEC on a cross-country bus ride in search of his college girlfriend and a last chance at romantic redemption. Meanwhile, back in Manhattan, his brilliant wife Seema struggles to raise their autistic son and begins a tragicomic love affair of her own.
“Gary’s novel is a beautifully executed character study highlighting the depth of human contradiction and complication, set against the timely backdrop of America today,” said Gyllenhaal and Marker in a joint statement. “We are thrilled to partner with HBO, who has consistently been home to some of the most exciting and acclaimed premium content over the past two decades.”
Gyllenhaal is one of the most celebrated actors of his generation, having earned an Oscar nomination for best supporting actor for “Brokeback Mountain” and Golden Globe nominations for the films “Nightcrawler” and “Love & Other Drugs.” He is also known for his roles in films such as “Donnie Darko,” “Prisoners,” and “Zodiac.” Most recently, he starred in the films “Velvet Buzzsaw” and “The Sisters Brothers.” He will also appear in the upcoming Marvel movie “Spider-Man: Far From Home.”
Gyllenhaal and Nine Stories are repped by WME and Bloom Hergott. Marker is repped by WME and Paul Hastings LLP.
Shteyngart is the author of New York Times bestseller “Little Failure” and the novels “Super Sad True Love Story,” “Absurdistan,” and “The Russian Debutante’s Handbook.” He is repped by CAA, Denise Shannon Literary Agency, and Hirsch Wallerstein.
Spezialy’s past credits include shows like “The Leftovers,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Dead Like Me,” “Manhattan,” “Reaper,” and “Castle Rock.” He also co-developed the Starz series “Ash vs. Evil Dead” and currently serves as executive producer on HBO’s upcoming “Watchmen” series. He is repped CAA, Manage-ment and Jackoway Austen Tyerman.