“Snowpiercer” has a new conductor behind the camera.
James Hawes has boarded TNT’s drama reboot series as co-executive producer and director and will be responsible for the planned pilot reshoots, a person with knowledge of the production tells TheWrap.
Hawes’ entry comes less than two weeks after the project’s original director, Scott Derrickson, exited the project due to a “radically different vision” from new showrunner Graeme Manson, who took over for creator Josh Friedman, who was fired from the series in January.
“The 72-page Snowpiercer TV pilot script by @Josh_Friedman is the best I’ve ever read,” Derrickson tweeted on June 29. “The feature-length pilot I made from that script may be my best work. The new showrunner has a radically different vision for the show. I am forgoing my option to direct the extreme reshoots.”
The “Snowpiercer” series is set to star Jennifer Connelly as one of the passengers who inhabit a gigantic, perpetually moving train after the world has become a frozen wasteland. The series also stars Daveed Diggs, Mickey Sumner, Susan Park, Benjamin Haigh, Sasha Frolova, Katie McGuinness, Alison Wright, Annalise Basso, Sam Otto, Roberto Urbina, Sheila Vand and Lena Hall.
Back in May, Friedman took aim at his successor as showrunner on Twitter, saying his replacement is “either an idiot, a coward, or a vichy motherf–er.”
“If you’re asked to rewrite someone or take over their show it seems like good sense and good karma to reach out to that person first and a) find out what the circumstances of their departure are and b) thank them for doing the work you’ll be profiting from,” Friedman wrote.
Friedman wrote the pilot for TNT’s adaptation of the 2014 Bong Joon Ho film and was set to serve as showrunner, but was replaced by “Orphan Black” co-creator Manson in February, a decision the network attributed to creative differences. In an earlier tweet, Friedman wrote that he “was fired from Snowpiercer in the same phone call I was told it was picked up.”
Hawes recently directed two episodes of the freshman season of TNT’s period drama “The Alienist.” His other small screen-directing credits include “Black Mirror,” “The Mist,” “Penny Dreadful,” and “Genius,” and British series like “Doctor Who,” “The Bill,” and “Merlin.”
The original pilot was directed by Derrickson, with “Snowpiercer” filmmaker Bong Joon Ho executive producing along with, Park Chan-wook, Lee Tae-hun and Dooho Choi, and Tomorrow Studios’ Marty Adelstein and Becky Clements. The reboot is a co-production between Tomorrow Studios and Turner’s Studio T, as well as CJ Entertainment.
Variety first reported the news of Hawes’ addition to the project.