Cary Fukunaga scored the plum gig of directing Bond 25 after Danny Boyle bailed, but the director, who cut his teeth on the first season of True Detective, isn’t ready to ditch the small screen quite yet. Per Deadline, he’s teaming up with another TV veteran in director Nicole Kassell (Watchmen, Westworld, The Americans) to develop a series adaptation of James Fenimore Cooper’s The Last Of The Mohicans. Michael Mann and Daniel Day-Lewis’ 1992 film is the novel’s most recent adaptation, though it had been put to screen a staggering eight times prior.
This latest go at Cooper’s epic was announced back in 2013 as an FX series with the film’s co-writer, but, with that take apparently scuttled, Fukunaga will script with writer Nicholas Osborne. Kassell, meanwhile, will direct the series, which, per Deadline, “re-centers the classic tale on the unlikely romance between Uncas, a young Mohican, and Cora, the mixed-race daughter of a British colonel.”
“The clash of civilizations during the Seven Years War, which frames the story of Last of the Mohicans, has been a long-time passion of mine,” Fukunaga said. “It was a world war before the term even existed. The opportunity to recreate the story’s strong-willed and free-thinking characters, with talents including Nick Osborne and Nicole Kassell, is incredibly exciting to me. Together with Paramount TV and Anonymous Content, we have the chance to revive the forgotten ancestors that define American identity today.”
“I am profoundly excited to be a part of this extraordinary team and to be bringing a new light and perspective to this period in our history,” Kassell added. “While the James Fenimore Cooper book and original film leave large shoes to fill, Nick and Cary’s script is a riveting read and fresh take. They embrace this incredible opportunity to show and explore characters so often marginalized. To echo a sentiment Nick expressed to me in our first conversation ‘certain stories are timeless vessels that allow different generations to look at it and explore them in different ways.’ To be a part of bringing these eyes and hearts to the screen is the opportunity of a lifetime for me.”
It’s unclear whether the pair see the project as a limited series or if they’d be interested in adapting other books in Cooper’s Leatherstocking pentalogy. After 10 Mohicans adaptations, it might be time to give the other books a shot.