‘Vikings’ Creator Michael Hirst & Martin Scorsese Take On Rome In ‘The Caesars’
Sometimes news gets to us that makes us go “Oooohh, that sounds good!”. This is one of those times! Michael Hirst, creator of the brilliant ‘Vikings’ and legendary Hollywood film director Martin Scorsese are teaming up for a new tv series based on the early Caesars of Rome.
‘The Caesars’ tells the story of ancient Rome early rulers, beginning with the rise to power of the notorious Julius Caesar. Hirst has already written the pilot, which is expected to shoot in Italy next year, along with an outline for the rest of the first season.
“In the movies he’s usually a middle-aged guy, struggling with political complexities,” commented Hirst in an interview with The Guardian. “But he was fantastically interesting and ambitious when he was younger. A lot of the Caesars came to power when they were young, and we’ve never really seen that on screen. It’s the energy, the vitality, the excess of a young culture that’s being driven by young people. There is something astonishing about the rise of a relatively small kingdom to world power within a very short space of time. It couldn’t have been done by tired old politicos and faded warriors.”
Something Hirst and Scorsese have in common is a huge passion for the time period. “He genuinely loves the period and knows a lot about it,” continues Hirst. “He got on the phone to Justin Pollard, my historical adviser. They chatted, partly in Latin, about sources for the stories and Roman poetry.”
Hirst is no stranger to historical drama. Along with ‘Vikings’, his previous work includes the Emmy winning ‘The Tudors’ and ‘Elizabeth’ which was nominated for 7 Oscars, winning 1, and 12 BAFTAs, winning 6 including Best British Film and Best Actress for Cate Blanchett.
One of the big pluses for Hirst working with Scorsese, apart from his obvious directing genius, is that actors are lining up to take part in his projects. Although it’s unlikely we will see some of his regular muses like DiCaprio or De Niro, as Hirst adds “We’ll be casting a lot of young actors.”
Whilst Hirst does tend to take a few liberties with historical accuracy in his dramas, he does point out they are rooted in historical fact. “Just like Shakespeare’s history plays, they only start with some historical facts, then the drama takes over. You can’t have both,” he says.
‘The Caesars’ is not currently attached to any network, but with Hirst and Scorsese involved, we wouldn’t expect it to stay that way for very long. We’ll bring you more news as we get it.