The tumultuous events surrounding the making of Bernardo Bertolucci’s 1973 film “Last Tango in Paris” will be the subject of a limited series to be co-directed by Lisa Brühlmann (“Killing Eve”) and José Padilha (“Narcos”).
The series, titled “Tango,” is part of the international first-look agreement between CBS Studios and Stampede Ventures, an independent entertainment media company founded by former Warner Bros. Pictures president Greg Silverman.
The series, set in Italy, France and the U.S., written by Jeremy Miller and Daniel Cohn, will span the 18 months before, during and after the production of “Last Tango in Paris,” and will be told through the lens of those at the center of the events — stars Maria Schneider, Marlon Brando and Bertolucci.
The film is known for its infamous rape scene, which Bertolucci admitted decades later was not consensual.
“Controversy plagued the film following its release in January of 1973, while Brando and Bertolucci profited significantly — the film garnered adjusted gross of $186 million, the third highest grossing foreign film to date. The actor and the director went on to receive critical acclaim, with Oscar nominations for best actor and best director, respectively. Schneider, however, was exploited and ridiculed for her part in the film, which led her down a path of addiction and she struggled with mental health. The only compensation she ever received for her role was $4,000,” reads a statement from CBS and Stampede.
Silverman and J.P. Sarni of Stampede Ventures will executive produce, while Meghan Lyvers, senior VP of international co-productions and development at CBS Studios, will oversee the project for the studio.
Brühlmann said: “When José and Stampede approached me, I was instantly taken by the project and the chance to look closer at one of the biggest scandals of our industry’s history — despite it not being treated as such at the time. The opportunity to dive into that world, into all these fascinating characters, and especially the possibility of giving Maria Schneider a voice, is really exciting.”
Padilha added: “The director and the actors basked in success, while Maria’s pain was neglected. I’m thrilled to explore a story about the ethics of art, an important but often neglected subject matter, in partnership with director Lisa Brühlmann.”
CBS Studios and Stampede Ventures will be taking the series to market in early 2022.