Discovery Developing Anthology Series About Infamous Criminal Masterminds, Starting With Unabomber Manhunt

After breaking into the original scripted programming arena with the Klondike miniseries, Discovery Channel has been prepping an entry into scripted series with a development slate that includes a Harley-Davidson project announced in March. Now I’ve learned that the cable network has put in development Manifesto, an anthology drama series from Black List writer Andrew Sodroski and Kevin Spacey and Dana Brunetti’s Trigger Street.

I hear the show, which has been fast-tracked, would explore how the FBI caught infamous criminal masterminds, with each closed-ended season following a different case. The first season will focus on the FBI agent, a highly specialized linguist, who using unconventional means brought Ted Kaczynski, aka the “Unabomber,” to justice after nearly a 20-year manhunt. The show, said to be heavily serialized and darkly psychological in the vein of True Detective, would provide insight into the criminal and the case but also the psychological effects the cases have on the FBI agents assigned to hunt down the most dangerous criminals who often delve into a kind of madness of their own, becoming totally absorbed in the crimes and forced to live inside the darkest minds imaginable for years.

Trigger Street’s Spacey and Brunetti executive produce with Gian Pirates Entertainment’s Troy Searer. The trio previously teamed for The War at the Shore, an event series about the feud between flamboyant developers Donald Trump and Steve Wynn, which was sold to Spike TV last year.

This marks the first foray into TV for Sodroski, whose script Holland, Michigan topped the 2013 Black List and has Errol Morris set to direct. Sodroski, a Boston native who majored in medieval history at Harvard before getting an MFA in screenwriting at Columbia, since has written several action/thrillers for Warner Bros, MRC and Studio 8. He is repped by CAA, Peter Dealbert of Pacific View Management and attorney David Fox.

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