Well-known director Ridley Scott has been unable to walk into a new show pick-up purely by force of reputation, it appears, after his pilot The Vatican was claimed to not be progressing further by commissioning network Showtime.
The premium network had originally looked to the religious drama TV movie as a possible new feature after greenlighting a Scott-directed pilot late last year, but it appears as though The Vatican, which focused on “spirituality, power and politics” in its now-unseen trial run will not be filling a space in their schedules, with ‘story concerns’ claimed by Showtime’s ‘president of entertainment’ David Nevins as being the reason for their decision.
The drama pilod had featured Kyle Chandler (Friday Night Lights) starring as a ‘progressive New York cardinal’ accompanied by his ‘secular sister’ portrayed by Anna Friel (Pushing Daisies), whilst Bruno Ganz (Downfall) portrayed the pope in the show’s fictitious universe, one which was overseen by Scott (Alien) alongside writer/producer Paul Attanasio (House), who is noted as having quit midway through the process.
Other reasons for failure away from the official line are believed to include failures to stay on-budget or within deadlines after Attanasio’s departure, so potential viewers hoping for a representation of the ‘inner workings and politics of the modern Catholic Church’ will be left disappointed by this news.
Some of the targeted demographic may be satisfied by being introduced to the clip below of a former BBC attempt at a behind-the-scenes political drama, the although the ‘religious’ side… not so much. But it does star a doctor: