William Wallace (Braveheart) headed to the small screen for biopic series

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I’ve seen Mel Gibson’s Braveheart more times than I can count, and I can count pretty high. Every single time William Wallace does that final throat-rending shout of “FREEDOM!” a piece of my soul breaks off to go sob in the corner for 20 minutes. My wife walked into church on our wedding day, not to that faux circus-music Wedding March, but to the sounds of bagpipes playing James Horner’s moving theme from the film.

I guess you could say that I’m a fan.

So when news breaks that the tale of Scottish legend William Wallace will now be adapted into an epic TV series, you can be damn sure that it will get my attention.

THR is reporting that Mick Davis (The Eleventh Hour) will be serving as writer, creator and executive producer on this historical epic for STV Productions and Creative Media, and that reports indicate that the proposed show will be in the same vein as Game of Thrones.

I imagine that after reading that sentence, a massive chorus of “SOLD!” just went up amongst you. And honestly, who can blame you? Wallace’s story with GoT sensibilities is just too enticing a proposition to pass on.

STV’s director of content, Clements had this to say during the show’s announcement:

“This was a turbulent time in Scotland’s history, in which William Wallace had a starring and pivotal role. We plan to delve deep into his character and explore his passions, bringing parts of history to life in a spectacular and raw depiction.  With all eyes on Scotland in the current political climate, this also seems to be a very appropriate time to tell this story in more depth.”

That “raw depiction” part is what catches my eye. Although the show will cover a lot of the same ground as Gibson’s Oscar winning adaptation, depicting Wallace’s attempt to unify Scotland and his battles with the English, Gibson chose a slightly romanticized approach, not showing the historical figure’s more savage brutality. Like the time he beheaded an English lord on the battlefield, skinned him and then turned him into a sword belt. Seriously.

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There is also a period in Wallace’s life that due to time constraints, was just glossed over in Gibson’s film. The show would be able to delve closer into these events, shedding even more light on a major historical figure, which is never a bad thing.

Creative Media will start shopping the show around to TV networks next month.

PS: Damn, now I have the Braveheart theme stuck in my head. Which means I am going to have to make up stories for the rest of the day about how “I’m not crying, something just flew into my eye.”

Last Updated: March 13, 2012

Kervyn Cloete

A man of many passions – but very little sleep – I’ve been geeking out over movies, video games, comics, books, anime, TV series and lemon meringues as far back as I can remember. So show up for the geeky insight, stay for the delicious pastries.

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