Ridley Scott’s THE VATICAN Pilot Dead at Showtime

     December 12, 2013


It appears that Ridley Scott’s first foray into television as a director won’t actually be making it to television.  The filmmaker signed on to helm the pilot for the potential Showtime series The Vatican last year with Kyle Chandler in the lead role, but the network has decided not to move forward with the show.  Described as a contemporary thriller, the aim of the series was to explore spirituality, power, and politics against the backdrop of the modern-day political machinations within the Catholic Church.  THR reports that the expensive pilot did not turn out well, and difficulties with showrunner Paul Attanasio—including failure to meet deadlines and clashing with colleagues—led to his exit once they wrapped.  Hit the jump for more.

The failure of The Vatican to move forward to series is a disappointing turnout for sure, not only because it was Scott’s first foray into television but also because Chandler chose the project among many, many offers; the Friday Night Lights actor was one of the most sought-after talents this past pilot season.  He’ll surely land on his feet, though, as he’ll next be seen on the big screen in Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street.  Scott, meanwhile, is busy directing the Biblical epic Exodus starring Christian Bale as Moses.

As for new Showtime series that will be moving forward, the network is currently in production on the horror show Penny Dreadful from Skyfall writer John Logan and director Sam Mendes, who acts as executive producer.  That show stars Josh Hartnett and Eva Green and will debut sometime next year.