The Sopranos prequel movie has locked down its director. Alan Taylor, who helmed several episodes of the acclaimed HBO series during its original run, has been tapped to direct the prequel, which comes from creator David Chase. The movie, titled The Many Saints of Newark, is being developed by New Line Cinema and will take place in the same world as Chase's iconic series, but will be set decades before in the 1960s.
This marks the first movie for Alan Taylor since 2015's Terminator: Genisys, which was panned by critics and didn't quite do what Paramount was hoping for at the box office. Ultimately, it led to another reboot that is in production now. Taylor also handled Thor: The Dark World for Marvel Studios, which was given a warmer reception by comparison. However, as Marvel Cinematic Universe movies go, it's generally considered to be one of the franchise's worst movies. So his big screen work has left something to be desired, but he's done excellent work on TV. He won the 2007 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for The Sopranos episode Kennedy and Heidi. He's also worked on other prestige shows such as Game of Thrones and Boardwalk Empire. Taking all of that into account, he's a very logical choice for The Many Saints of Newark.
As we reported in March, Warner Bros.' New Line Cinema purchased the script for the movie from David Chase, which he co-wrote with Lawrence Konner, one of his collaborators on The Sopranos. Chase had previously been touchy on the idea of a revival of the series in any way, but this movie will allow him to further explore that world without sullying the legacy of what has already been established. The series is commonly regarded as one of the best shows in the history of television.
The prequel movie will take place in Newark, New Jersey in the 1960s at a time when conflicts between African-American and Italian residents were at peak levels of ugly. No further plot details for the movie have been disclosed by the studio, but several characters from The Sopranos are expected to appear as their younger selves. At the present time, it isn't clear which characters from the show will be showing up.
The Sopranos ran on HBO for six seasons from 1999 to 2007 and garnered 111 Emmy nominations during that time, notching 21 wins. It also was awarded Golden Globe and Peabody Awards during its run. The series helped put HBO on the map as a creator of marquee content. As for The Many Saints of Newark, no production timetable has been revealed just yet, but with Alan Taylor now in place to direct it's likely that casting will be getting underway shortly. Warner Bros. has yet to set a release date. We'll be sure to keep you up to date as more details on the project are made available. This news comes to us courtesy of The Wrap.