Sons Of Anarchy executive producers Art and John Linson have secured rights to Pulitzer Price winner Rick Atkinson’s bestselling book, The Long Gray Line: The American Journey Of West Point’s Class Of 1966. The book documented the cadets’ journey into the harsh years of the Vietnam War, when the American military faced real criticism for the first time in U.S. history, and the changed reality that awaited those who were fortunate enough to return to their homeland.
The Linsons will develop the book as a drama series for HBO under the duo’s overall deal. They have brought in Phil Klay to pen the adaptation in his screenwriting debut. A veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps who served in Iraq as a Public Affairs Officer, Klay wrote the book Redeployment, which won a 2014 National Book Award last night. It focuses on the aftermath of soldiers’ service in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Linsons executive produce the project.
“We are extremely pleased that Art and John have brought the prestigious The Long Gray Line to HBO,” says Michael Lombardo, president, HBO Programming. “This riveting drama puts a face on the young men who valiantly went off to a controversial war in Vietnam and returned to a different world. It is our honor to tell their story.”
Under their overall pact with HBO, Art and John Linson also are developing Yellowstone, a drama about a ranching family’s struggle against encroachment in southwest Montana. For that project, the father-and-son duo are reuniting with Sons Of Anarchy writer Taylor Sheridan who is writing the script. The Linsons also exec produced David Milch’s HBO pilot The Money.
Art Linson and John Linson were repped on the HBO deal by ICM Partners; Atkinson is repped by ICM Partners/Sagalyn; Klay is repped by WME.