It is centered around the 8-day clash between Arthur McCoy, played by Cooper, an incorruptible sheriff with a troubled past, and Red Bill, played by Booth, an infamous, solitary bounty hunter known for decapitating his victims and stuffing their heads into a dirty black bag, because, as he puts it, “Heads weigh less than bodies.” The drama echoes and pays homage to the classic spaghetti western, capturing the genre’s legendary irony while revolutionizing it in a modern way and appealing to younger audiences. The series tells of bounty hunters, bandits and bloody vendettas, lonely souls driven by such great passions as faith, love and revenge. In the world of That Dirty Black Bag, there are no heroes, nobody is invincible, and predators become the prey.
That Dirty Black Bag, which has been in various stages of development for a few years, also features Niv Sultan (Tehran), Guido Caprino (The Miracle), Christian Cooke (The Promise), Paterson Joseph (The Leftovers), Rose Williams (Sanditon), Zoe Boyle (Downton Abbey), Ivan Shaw (Nocturne), Eugene Brave Rock (Wonder Woman 1984), Anna Chancellor (Four Weddings and a Funeral), Aidan Gillen (Game of Thrones) and Travis Fimmel (Vikings).
It comes from Italian filmmaker Mauro Aragoni, who co-wrote the series with Silvia Ebreul, Marcello Izzo and Fabio Paladini. Brian O’Malley is co-directing with Aragoni with PJ Dillon as DOP.
Bron and Palomar are co-producing, with Bron’s David Davoli, Aaron L. Gilbert, Steven Thibault, and Samantha Thomas, joining Carlo Degli Esposti, Nicola Serra and Patrizia Massa from Palomar as executive producers.
The eight-part scripted television series is being produced in English. Mediawan, which owns a majority stake in Palomar, has secured French rights to the series. Bron Releasing and Palomar, which control all other rights, are currently in talks with buyers in the U.S. and other territories. CAA will be representing the series in the US alongside Bron Releasing and Palomar.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Palomar on this daring, edgy and Dantesque take on the classic Spaghetti Western, a genre that surfaced in the mid-1960’s lead by legendary Italian filmmaker, Sergio Leone, that is still quite relevant, especially in today’s brutish and cutthroat world where we are all desperately trying to find meaning,” said David Davoli, Bron’s President of Television. “Mauro, along with his co-writers, Silvia, Marcello and Fabio, have created a unique and audacious world, with bold, dangerous and fun characters that are sure to resonate with audiences around the world. This certainly is not your father’s western.”
“Our goal is to reimagine the tradition of the Spaghetti Western into something more operatic, modern and unexpected: great adventures, emotional complexity, strong female characters, little hints of dystopian elements. We want to entertain the audience delivering great excitement like the one we are experiencing shooting this show” added Nicola Serra, co-CEO of Palomar.