Oblivion Director and Pacific Rim Writer Team Up for New AMC Sci-Fi Series Ballistic City

By April 17, 2013

I hate to break it to you guys, but we’re rapidly approaching the end of AMC’s brilliant television series “Breaking Bad.” There are talks of a Saul Goodman spin-off that would follow the separate adventures of Bob Odenkirk’s awesome wise-ass lawyer character, but nothing has been officially announced on that front yet. AMC has a few other projects in the works that the network hopes can recapture some of the glory of its crystal meth-centric smash hit (more on those in a minute), and now The Hollywood Reporter has news about another potential successor to Walter White’s throne after he vacates it when the series ends this summer.

TRON: Legacy and Oblivion director Joseph Kosinski is teaming with Travis Beacham, the writer of Guillermo del Toro’s “giant monsters vs. giant robots” summer blockbuster Pacific Rim, to develop a show called “Ballistic City.” Beacham will write the pilot screenplay, Kosinski will direct the pilot, and the duo will co-executive produce the series (along with a few other no-namers). Set sometime in the future, the show is being pitched as a mix of noir stories like Chinatown and Blade Runner and follows “a former cop thrust into the criminal underworld of a city housed in a generational spaceship destined for an unknown world.”

Sounds like it could end up sharing some DNA with Joss Whedon’s “Firefly” as well, and I’m sure the brass at the network would love “Ballistic City” to gain a fanbase as fervent as the Browncoats. Beacham’s track record is unproven as far as I’m concerned (he wrote the Clash of the Titans remake but also Pacific Rim, so I’d say he’s neutral at this point), but Kosinski’s outstanding visual sense could translate really well to the small screen if he has the budget to make it happen. I’m sure AMC could throw some of that “Mad Men” and “Breaking Bad” money at them to make sure the effects are better than your average SyFy original series, so this could end up being a terrific addition to their upcoming slate. Also in development: “Area 51,” a period piece that takes place at the government installation; “Walking Dead” creator Robert Kirkman’s new project “Thief of Thieves,” a possible Goodfellas TV adaptation, and more.

I love film noir stories, murder mysteries, and futuristic worlds, and anything that combines all of those elements definitely has my attention. Kosinski (who we just spoke with about Oblivion) may be better suited for television than film if he finds a long-form story that’s better told through that medium, so we’re excited to see what he and Beacham can do with their powers combined. Are you interested in seeing what “Ballistic City” has to offer? Sound off in the comments below.

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Ben is a writer living in Los Angeles, California. His work has been featured at ScreenRant.com, FirstShowing.net, MySpace.com, GeekTyrant.com, and many more sites across the web. Some of his favorite movies include The Rocketeer, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Tombstone, Lucky Number Slevin, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Collateral, Double Indemnity, Back to the Future and The Prestige. Follow him on Twitter: @BenPears.