Bill Paxton is set as one of the bad-cop leads in CBS’ drama pilot Training Day, a present-day reimagining of Antoine Fuqua’s acclaimed 2001 feature that starred Denzel Washington as a rogue narcotics detective and Ethan Hawke as his rookie cop partner.
Set 15 years after the film left off, the TV show, written by Will Beall, gives the dynamic of the characters a twist. In it, an idealistic young African-American police officer, Kyle Craig, is appointed to an elite squad of the LAPD where he is partnered with seasoned, morally ambiguous detective Frank Rourke (Paxton).
Frank — a veteran LAPD cop who heads up the Special Investigation Section, a unit that goes after the worst of the worst — lives by the law of the jungle and believes that real courage is the will to chase the bad guys where the law won’t. Needless to say, Frank isn’t too keen to be babysitting new trainee Kyle.
Early incarnations of the pilot script had the corrupt older cop as Jake Hoyt, the character Hawke played in the movie, or Hoyt as a Deputy Chief. The show moved away from both versions after Hawke opted not to be involved in the reboot.
Fuqua and Beall executive produce Training Day with Jerry Bruckheimer TV’s Jerry Bruckheimer and Jonathan Littman for WBTV, Fuqua Films and Jerry Bruckheimer TV. KristieAnne Reed is co-executive producing.
Danny Cannon will direct and executive produce the pilot, taking over directing duties from Fuqua, who had to pull out because of scheduling reasons.
Paxton starred in History’s miniseries Hatfields & McCoys, which earned him an Emmy nomination, and Texas Rising, and he recurred on ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. This would mark his first series regular role since HBO’s Big Love. Paxton is repped by UTA and Bloom Hergott.
The Training Day movie earned Oscar nominations for both of its stars, with Washington winning for lead actor.