Antoine Fuqua's TRAINING DAY gets a TV pilot order

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Training Day header

Training Day, directed by Antoine Fuqua and written by David Ayer (Fury), is a damn good movie. Released way back in the mists of time (2001 to be precise) the crime thriller starred Denzel Washington as a seasoned and somewhat shady LAPD narcotics detective assigned to take a rookie cop, played by Ethan Hawke, under his wing for a 24-hour training course. And stuff happens. Bad stuff.

It’s also the latest movie to be retrofitted for the small screen as TV network CBS has (via Deadline) given a pilot order for the series. Particularly good news for fans of the movie is that Antoine Fuqua is on board as executive producer and will direct the pilot; not only that – he’s also been the one pushing for a green light in the first place. Will Beall (Gangster Squad, Castle) is on board as writer, and Warner Bros. TV and Jerry Bruckheimer TV will handle the production.

Ethan Hawke, Denzel Washington, Antoine Fuqua
Ethan Hawke, Denzel Washington, Antoine Fuqua

The pilot will also flip the script somewhat. Set 15 years after the events in the original movie, the show will see…

an idealistic young African-American police officer is appointed to an elite squad of the LAPD where he is partnered with a seasoned, morally ambiguous Caucasian detective.

And I think this is a good change. Numerous issues and controversies around police brutality, racial profiling and their associated cover-ups have exploded in the press and into the public consciousness over the last few years; and given rise to mass protests against the police and lead to the formation of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Seeing all that through the eyes of a young black cop entering the predominantly white world of policing and, presumably, policing non-white neighbourhoods should provide a unique take on the cop show genre we’re all familiar with. If it can avoid the easy tropes of the typical police procedural, this could just be one to watch.

What do you think?

Last Updated: February 3, 2016

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