USA Network has picked up a new crime anthology series from writer-executive producer Andy Greenwald, executive producer Sam Esmail, Universal Cable Prods. and Paramount Television. The first season, titled Briarpatch, starring Rosario Dawson, was originally ordered as a pilot, which was directed by Ana Lily Amirpour.
In conjunction with the series order for Briarpatch, Greenwald (Legion) has been signed into an overall deal at UCP.
Briarpatch, based on the Ross Thomas novel of the same name, was written for television by Greenwald, who executive produces alongside Mr. Robot and Homecoming‘s Esmail through his production company Esmail Corp, and Anonymous Content’s Chad Hamilton. Amirpour also served as an executive producer on the pilot. In addition to her starring role, Dawson will be a producer on the series.
Briarpatch follows Allegra Dill (Dawson), a dogged investigator returning to her border-town Texas home after her sister is murdered. What begins as a search for a killer turns into an all-consuming fight to bring her corrupt hometown to its knees. The season celebrates the beloved genres represented by Thomas’ book — a stylish blend of crime and pulp fiction — while updating his sense of fun, danger and place for a new generation.
The season also stars Jay R. Ferguson, Brian Geraghty and Edi Gathegi. It will shoot in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
“When we were first introduced to the anthology by Andy Greenwald, UCP and Paramount Television, we were immediately struck by the show’s unique tone and captivating story,” said Chris McCumber, President, Entertainment Networks for NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. “And Sam Esmail’s incomparable vision and style, coupled with Rosario Dawson’s tremendous performance as Allegra Dill, will no doubt leave audiences buzzing.”
Briarpatch was one of four pilots ordered by USA last April. Of the other three, Bourne offshoot Treadstone saw its order upped to straight-to-series last summer. There is no final decision yet on Dare Me and Erase.
Under his UCP overall deal, Greenwald will develop and produce scripted projects for cable and streamers. In addition to his three UCP series, Mr. Robot, Homecoming and Briarpatch, Esmail has been developing a limited series based on Fritz Lang’s sci-fi classic Metropolis for the studio.