TNT-logo__130925223204Tim McGraw is set to topline and executive produce Robbers, a drama project, which has landed at TNT in a competitive situation. Based on Christopher Cook’s 2000 debut novel, Robbers hails from Sony Pictures TV, Sarah Timberman and Carl Beverly’s Timberman/Beverly and Michael Dinner. Cook and Dinner are writing the adaptation, with Dinner set to direct.

robbersDescribed as being in the literary-noir tradition of Cormac McCarthy’s No Country For Old Men, Robbers tells the story of a cop, two “running buddies” on a crime spree across Texas, and the girl who becomes the complication in a very unique love triangle. Everyone has a story. Everyone is a mystery. McGraw would play one of the two drifters, Ray Bob, described as being worst of the worst. McGraw, Dinner, Beverly and Timberman executive produce.

The style of Cook’s Robbers is said to be be evocative of Elmore Leonard, a fitting comparison as the new project reunites key auspices behind the FX drama Justified, based on a Leonard short story — executive producer/director Dinner, exec producers Timberman and Beverly and studio Sony Image (4) michaeldinner1.jpg for post 703766TV. Robbers originated at Sony where Timberman/Beverly was based before moving to CBS TV Studios in 2010. With Justified winding down, wrapping its six-season run earlier this year, Timberman, Beverly and Dinner looked for another project they could do together. Robbers quickly got off the ground once McGraw got attached.

Country star/actor McGraw had been pursued for TV series for years but this is believed to be the first one he has agreed to do. Among the projects that heavily courted him were another TNT drama, hit The Last Ship, as well as pilot Wild Blue at Fox, then run by current TNT/TBS president Kevin Reilly, which had Dinner attached to direct and executive produce.

In features, McGraw will next be seen opposite George Clooney in Tomorrowland.

Sarah and CarlTimberman/Beverly, which just renewed their deal at CBS TV Studios, has six series airing this year, including JustifiedUnforgettable, which was picked up for a fourth season by A&E; Masters Of Sex, returning for a third season on Showtime; Elementary, in its third season on CBS, as well as freshmen Hindsight on VH1, which already has been renewed for a second season, and The Odd Couple on CBS. The company’s development slate includes another project at Sony TV, a cable adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s Mr. Paradise.

Under Reilly and new TNT programming chief Sarah Aubrey, the network had been seeking edgier material for its drama slate.

McGraw, Dinner, Timberman and Beverly are repped by CAA.