Amelie's Jean-Pierre Jeunet to helm new Phantom of the Opera TV series

The classic novel THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA is being reimagined yet again, this time as a small screen series. The Gaston Leroux novel was originally published in 1909 but has gone on to be adapted for the big screen numerous times and most famously as a Broadway musical. That version finally became a film back in 2005 under the direction of Joel Schumacher with a cast including Emmy Rossum, Gerard Butler, Minnie Driver, and Patrick Wilson. Now, a new take will be brought to screens with a slight twist.

AMELIE director Jean-Pierre Jeunet will helm the series which was created by writer-producer Tony Krantz (FELICITY, 24, THE WEST WING, ER). The new series will move the setting from 19th century Paris to the early 20th century and will not be musical in nature.

Described as a drama brimming with tortured love affairs, sex, murder and mystery among the international jet set at the dawn of the Jazz Age, the Phantom Of The Opera series is set in 1919 against a backdrop of the Paris Peace Conference. The story centers on a British World War I fighter pilot with burns covering half of his body. He finds himself at the center of a string of murders that threatens to embroil the city’s gathered world leaders. The “Opera” in this re-imagining is an opera house that is home to the hottest nightclub in Paris — think Studio 54 — whose American Josephine Baker-esque headliner finds herself in the cross hairs of the serial killer.

The series is being produced by Endemol USA which has also developed the AMC series HELL ON WHEELS and the DirecTV series KINGDOM. There does not appear to be a network connected to THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA yet, but Jean-Pierre Jeunet is an Oscar-nominated filmmaker and a big name outside of the United States. I would anticipate the series gaining traction on a cable network like FX or possible Starz.

THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA remains one of the most iconic stories of all time and may be the next big property to be developed on television. ABC is also developing their own modernized take on the story which is may premiere around the same time. What remains to be seen is whether Jeunet's unique visual style will come into play for the series or if it will remain a more mainstream take on the story. Stay tuned for more as the series develops.

Source: Deadline



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