EXCLUSIVE: A biographical series about President Richard Nixon is in the works for television. Lightbridge Entertainment has teamed with Oscar-winning writer Ron Bass (Rain Man) to adapt Evan Thomas’ New York Times bestselling biography Being Nixon: A Man Divided as a six-hour narrative limited series. Bass will pen the adaptation and serve as an Executive Producer on the series alongside Lightbridge Entertainment founder and CEO Terry Botwick.
Voted and named one of the top 10 nonfiction books of 2015, Being Nixon covers Nixon’s entire life. It is described as a portrait of an incredibly fascinating and consequential man who remains one of America’s most studied presidents, a brilliant, relentless foreign policy strategist and political savant whose career in American politics spanned nearly five decades and whose legacy forever bears the stains of Watergate.
The project is particularly timely given the impeachment inquiry and current scandals surrounding President Donald Trump, who appears to be following in Nixon’s footsteps. Nixon, the 37th President of the United States, resigned in August 1974 in the face of almost certain impeachment and removal from office amid the Watergate scandal.
Lightbridge has entered into a relationship with the Richard Nixon Library & Museum to provide research and other materials in support of the project. However, Lightbridge says it maintains complete creative freedom and control of the project.
“Ron Bass is the perfect partner to adapt Evan’s important biography. Both men are brilliant writers and Ron was a student of political science and international affairs,” says Botwick. “Understanding the character of Nixon, who led the country in incredibly turbulent and dangerous times, is particularly timely in the current cultural landscape.”
“The purpose of the book and the series is to understand to the greatest extent possible what it is to be Nixon and what that tells us about ourselves and those who govern us,” added Bass.
Bass won the 1988 Oscar for Best Original Screenplay for Rain Man. His other films, on which he also served as a producer or executive producer include Gardens of Stone, Black Widow, Sleeping With the Enemy, The Joy Luck Club, When a Man Loves a Woman, Waiting To Exhale, Dangerous Minds, My Best Friend’s Wedding, Stepmoms, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Entrapment and others.
Botwick recently produced Captive starring David Oyelowo and Kate Mara, distributed by Paramount Pictures, and Cool It, released by Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate. Previously, he was Senior VP of Current Programming and Specials for CBS Entertainment, President Hearst Entertainment, President of and COO for Big Idea Productions and President of Vanguard Films & Animation as well as VP Original Programming at The Family Channel. At Lightbridge Entertainment, he serves as producer on the company’s slate of films and television series currently in development including Savior, written by Todd Komarnicki (Sully) in partnership with Oakhurst Entertainment and JSA written by David Franzoni (Gladiator, Amistad).