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Mark Boal Sets Spy Series at Showtime Exploring 2016 Election

Mark Boal, the former journalist who wrote and produced “The Hurt Locker” and “Zero Dark Thirty,” is returning to the espionage arena and dipping his toe into television for the first time, Variety has learned.

Showtime has made a series commitment for “Intelligence,” a spy thriller series which Boal will write, direct and executive produce. The show, based on real stories from around the world, will explore the secret inner workings of power and how espionage intersects with politics, finance, media and Silicon Valley. The first season will dramatize the behind-the-scenes history leading up to the 2016 U.S. election, with each potential subsequent season looking at a major world event through the lens of covert operations.

“As he showed with both ‘The Hurt Locker’ and ‘Zero Dark Thirty,’ Mark truly excels at transforming current events into gripping, scripted drama,” said Gary Levine, President of Entertainment at Showtime. “When he told us he wanted to use those same, extraordinary abilities to create his first television series, we leapt at it.”

Boal won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for “The Hurt Locker” in 2010 and was nominated again for “Zero Dark Thirty.” His regular collaboration with director Kathryn Bigelow also yielded the 2017 movie “Detroit.” His most recent credit is as a writer and executive producer on the Ben Affleck and Oscar Isaac action thriller “Triple Frontier,” which premiered on Netflix in March.

As a journalist, Boal’s writing has appeared in publications such as Rolling Stone, The Village Voice, Salon, and Playboy.

“Intelligence” is a Showtime and Media Res studio co-production, with Michael Ellenberg exec-producing for Media Res. Hugo Lindgren will executive produce for Page 1, and Alan Poul, Jason Horwitch and Megan Ellison will all also serve as executive producers.

Ellenberg, a former HBO exec, launched his Media Res label in 2017 and currently has three series set at Apple: Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston-starrer “The Morning Show,” “Pachinko,” and the untitled Brie Larson CIA project.

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