Way back in 2015, we reported that Ridley Scott was attached to direct an adaptation of The Cartel, the then-new novel from Don Winslow and a sequel to his book The Power Of The Dog. The book is a thriller set around two former friends, with one of them now being a DEA agent and the other being a member of a Mexican drug cartel, and it was said to hit some similar notes as the then-recent prison escape pulled off by Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman. Since then, Winslow has released another sequel called The Border (it literally just came out at the end of February) and Ridley Scott has continued to be pretty busy, but the idea of a story about Mexican drug cartels fighting against the U.S. government simply cannot die for some reason.
So, as reported by Deadline, the Cartel adaptation has moved off to FX, with Scott still on board as an executive producer. The show doesn’t have a showrunner or regular writer yet, but Shane Salerno will co-write the pilot at least. The plan for the Cartel TV show is to follow the grand scope of Winslow’s whole trilogy, which takes place over 45 years and details the “blood feud” between the aforementioned DEA agent and his drug cartel ex-friend, with Deadline saying the books are “often shocking in brutality and raw in humanity.” It sounds like FX is hoping this will be a brutal prestige drama about some very real and ripped-from-the-headlines events.