July 29, 2014
Wells Tower is writing a TV pilot
by Benjamin Sandman
In the works: a new TV show starring Alec Baldwin. Why is this news? Because the writer is a funny, and exceptionally skillful author with a Brooklyn connection––and, no, I’m not talking about Jonathan Ames. As The Millions reported, Wells Tower, author of the acclaimed story collection Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned, is attached to the project.
As a Deadline article reveals, Baldwin will play the mayor of New York City in a role inspired by Toronto mayor Rob Ford’s travails, which include a conflict of interest trial, crack-cocaine abuse, and a sound bite on oral sex that makes me really uncomfortable.
Weird stuff, yes––but I imagine Tower is up to the challenge. The title story of his collection deals with a band of pillaging vikings. And the story is funny.
One can hope the TV show won’t delay Tower’s novel. For what it’s worth, he’s managed a full schedule since 2009; some great nonfiction has appeared in GQ and Outside, and a story was published in McSweeney’s in 2013.
No word yet on when to expect a premier. We do know a few details: the show is being conceived as a one-hour cable series, and it will air on NBC.
There’s no guarantee, of course, that the network will pick up the show. Maybe, like Ames’ HBO series Bored to Death, the show will run for multiple seasons. Maybe the show will even get made into a film. And maybe––if we’re lucky––Tower will write a role for his dad.
Ben Sandman is a Melville House intern