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FOX Greenlights Hart Hanson’s “Fun and Disturbed” Backstrom

By on January 8, 2014

Rainn Wilson. Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez – © 2012 Getty Images

If like us you were intrigued by Backstrom earlier this year (catch the original CBS pilot teaser trailer below, if you missed it) then you might be interested to hear that following those rumours of the series being dead in the water following a pass from CBS, FOX has now officially greenlit 13 episodes of the series.

Based on Swedish criminologist and novelist Leif G.W. Persson’s series of books of the same name, Backstrom comes from Hart Hanson (Bones), and stars Rainn Wilson (The Office) as Detective Everett Backstrom described as an offensive, irascible detective, who he tries, and fails, to change his self-destructive behavior. Throughout the series, Backstrom leads his team, the Serious Crimes Unit, as they navigate Portland’s most sensitive cases.

“Hart Hanson and Rainn Wilson are the perfect combination of creative vision and on-screen talent to bring this one-of-a-kind character and story like Backstrom to FOX,” said Kevin Reilly, Chairman of Entertainment, at FOX. “I’ve been in business with Hart for a long time, and not only does he have a rare gift for infusing darker themes with relatable humor, he’s one of the best showrunners out there today. Together with Rainn – who absolutely nails this role and makes it a classic FOX character – I think we’ve got something really special here.”

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“There are so few creators out there with the genuine ability to mix great procedural storytelling with humor, and Hart Hanson is one of those guys. Getting another show on the air with him has been a top priority of this company,” commented Twentieth Century Fox Television Chairmen and CEOs Gary Newman and Dana Walden. “And getting the amazing Rainn Wilson in the title role was quite simply a coup. His Backstrom fits perfectly into FOX’s long history of dramas centered around a bigger-than-life iconic character.”

“Naturally, all of us who worked on Backstrom thought it was too promising a series to die unseen and Dana and Gary were relentless in their support of the project,” added Hanson. “Imagine our delight to find that Kevin Reilly and his team at FOX agreed enough to pick it up and give us a good home. Thanks FOX!”

“I couldn’t be more thrilled to get a chance to dig into Detective Everett Backstrom. For an actor it’s rare to get a crack at a role of such intelligence, humor and complexity. He’s a delightfully disheveled misanthrope with a twisted, brilliant mind and a heart of barbed wire. Truly the role of a lifetime,” noted Wilson. “Hart Hanson is an incredible writer and showrunner and I couldn’t be more excited to collaborate with him. Last but not least, FOX is the perfect home for this fun and disturbed piece of entertainment. They are passionate about the show and I’m ecstatic to be working with Kevin Reilly again (he launched “The Office” on NBC and fought tooth-and-nail for us to stay on the air, let’s not forget) and to be on the same network as my frenemy, Mindy Kaling.”

Hanson serves as executive producer on the series with Persson and Niclas Salomonsson.

Production is scheduled to begin in early 2014.

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