Ah, Deadwood. It’s the cult Breaking Bad, only this time about a sunny frontier town and its adorable characters. Every day is a new surprise in this quaint little village, where everyone knows your name and nobody gets away with being a gloomy gus.
Probably because Swearengen will stab you.
A good writer would qualify Deadwood for the uninitiated, but I’m not going to do that. I’m not talking to you. This here talk is to the Deadwood fans and the news that a Deadwood movie may very well become a reality.
After being left in the lurch after season 3, two movies were originally planned to tie a bow in the series. Sadly that never happened and eventually everyone moved on. Then, more than a decade later, up comes HBO programming president Michael Lombardo and says that he’s greenlit a Deadwood film, made specially for HBO.
“David has our commitment that we’re going to do it,” said Lombardo to TVLine. “He pitched what he thought generally the storyline would be — and knowing David, that could change. But it’s going to happen.”
It should be noted that this is just a confirmation of intent. None of the original cast have as yet signed on. That may be the problem: Deadwood originally collapsed under its hefty costs and large cast. Several have gone on to slightly larger success, the biggest probably Ian McShane’s many movie support roles and Timothy Olyphant with Justified, so it may prove tricky to herd them all back.
A decade-long gap could also prove tricky, since everyone got older. But in a way the movie will not be able to pick up long after the series stopped: there are too many story threads requiring attention. If the makers decide to jump ahead in time, it will be a gamble. Deadwood was watched as much for its stories as its characters.
Season 3 left off with two dominant themes: the future of the camp and the problem that is George Hearst. Will the movie follow on from that or will it do something else? There is another limitation: even though Deadwood is fictional its puts a narrative to actual historic events. The movie won’t have a lot of moving space, unless it decides to break away from history completely.
Will that be good or bad? I’m not sure – as a fan I’ll have to wait and see.
Last Updated: January 15, 2016