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How the thriller almost didn’t end up on Netflix – Deadline

How the thriller almost didn’t end up on Netflix – Deadline

Gave Netflix yesterday night agent Season 2 quick pickup just six days after the release of creator Shawn Ryan and Sony Pictures TV thriller thriller with the third best week of a new series premiere – just in the back Wednesday And Dahmer – Putting the series starring Gabriel Basso on track to rank in the top 5 best series of all time on Netflix.

“I still get it,” Ryan, mused Shield and showrunner of SWAT, He said. “I’ve had a long career and certainly some success stories, but nothing quite like this in terms of the intense, immediate fan reaction. It almost doesn’t feel real.”

The renewal comes exactly two years later night agentBased on the novel by Matthew Kirk, it was shown on the streaming device, which was not very impressed at first. A few things changed from that original pitch before the series hit the air, mainly, taking the Secret Service story out of the pilot script and delaying its introduction to Episode 3, as well as abandoning Italy as the main location.

As Deadline reported, Ryan announced in December 2020 that he’s adapting night agent, which he included in tweets about his favorite books of the year under “Books I’ve read, decided to adapt for TV and may have already finished writing the pilot episode.” He combined the concept and characters of the novel with an idea he was working on about Secret Service personnel protecting the Vice President’s daughter while she is in college, and wrote a screenplay set in five days.

This included the main original demo script night factor The story of Peter (Basso), a low-level FBI agent who operates a White House emergency spy phone who receives a call from a terrified civilian, Rose (Lucian Buchanan) after her aunt and uncle, as well as the vice president’s daughter, are murdered. Maddie and her details are in the Secret Service in Rome. It was submitted to up to twelve places in February 2021. All but two of them passed. Those who have expressed interest are Netflix and NBCU; They heard the pitch the following month, March 2021.

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Lisa Katz, head of scripted content at NBCUniversal, who has a longstanding relationship with Ryan, was very excited about the show and the show and made a commitment to produce a pilot for the project to shoot a pilot in two months. The pilot was going to be for NBC or Peacock; With the current setup, NBCU often develops a series before deciding whether to go to a broadcast network or broadcast device.

Meanwhile, producers feared that Netflix was about to pass. I heard they reached out to Broadcaster Danielle Woodrow, then series director of UCAN Drama, who is close to Ryan and his longtime executive Marnie Hochman through their work together as executive producers on CBS. SWAT.

The outreach helped lead to a call between Ryan and Netflix’s Drama Series VP, Jinny Howe, during which she shared her concerns about the split focus of the pilot between the Peter/Rose story and the Secret Service story. Howe and her team were not opposed to the Secret Service plot, but based on what they found worked better on the broadcast device, they felt it would be best if the pilot focused on Peter and Rose and the world later opened up to include a Secret Service story.

“She was very helpful in clarifying her concerns,” said Ryan. “They also understood if I didn’t want to change anything in the script and they wanted to be respectful about that.”

Ryan asked for some time to think things through. He quickly saw a way to expand the Peter/Rose pilot story and push back the Secret Service story. Rather than pitching his ideas to Howe, he felt it would be better to rewrite the script as if the project was already in development and he was just doing a net note. Over the weekend, he wrote what he calls a “Netflix pass.” Its original script was 59 pages, which cut the Secret Service story down to 53 pages, which made the story even tighter. The biggest addition was a confrontation outside Peter’s apartment with young Rome Tommy, and Ryan also lengthened out some of Peter/Rose’s conversations and got deeper with them.

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Most of the Secret Service story – as written in the original pilot – consists of Episode 103 where the plot line is finally introduced.

“I think the changes to Netflix’s notes have finally made it a better experience,” Ryan said.

Netflix liked the remake and agreed to take part in the project in development, posing a “bird-in-hand” sort of dilemma for the producers – whether to immediately audition for NBCU but then have to wait longer (possibly) to go to series, not sure Whether it ends up at NBC or Peacock, or sells the reworked show for development to Netflix where it will likely get to series faster with the casting advantage of being able to offer a series for the cast, not just a pilot, remains to be seen.

In the end, Sony was able to negotiate a very small decision window with Netflix, which is believed to be 45-60 days after they get a series show, which got Ryan comfortable with the global streamer. He quickly put together a detailed rundown of the ten episodes. It was delivered in mid-June 2021. The Netflix brass must have swayed when they pulled the trigger just two weeks later, greenlighting the show in early-mid-August.

Ryan’s original idea involved the VP’s daughter studying in Rome and all the action eventually migrating there, culminating in a grand finale in an international conference with the president. After talks with Netflix, the decision was made to keep the season set in the DC region, with Camp David as the backdrop for the big attack.

“It was tough, because I would have loved to do the show for Lisa and NBCU, but I always felt from the beginning that the show could really work for Netflix, that they had nothing like it, and when the script was revised it was the place to go.”

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Not only did Netflix have anything like it night agentit seems that the show could be an upscale network drama in the tradition of 24, And it was approached as one, proving that the model can work with streaming devices, too. And giving Ryan his first flush hit in the process.

“I tried to apply some of the old rules of television to the process—especially that television makes more stars than stars need,” said Ryan. “I was really excited to discover a Peter and a Rose movie that would be fresh and new for most of the audience, and I think that was one of the things that really excites viewers. Gabriel and Lucien are just Peter and a Rose to them. I felt at the time that Netflix was one of the last places In the city where you can launch a show without the big stars (although, for sure [Night Agent lead] Hong Zhao’s star has risen a lot since we first cast her) and has been a hit. I feel like it’s a vindication of what we all know is true — that the right story, with the right cast, even if they’re not so well known, can be one of the most exciting experiences for viewers — but that’s not a lot of places practice anymore.”

In fact, most of the presentations these days must have a famous talent to catch the attention of the operators. night agent It succeeds without known stars or a popular primary IP address.

“I am very proud of the show,” said Ryan. “I’ve always loved watching it in the editing room and it’s gratifying that so many people agree with it.”