The director of “The Da Vinci Code” and “Solo: A Star Wars Story” is on board for the pilot episode of a darkly comic military medical drama “68 Whiskey.”
A young star on “The Andy Griffith Show” in the 1960s and an integral part of the “Happy Days” cast through the mid-70s to mid-80s, Ron Howard has made a TV comeback since the turn of the millennium thanks to his role as the narrator on US sitcom “Arrested Development.”
He’s also established himself as one of Hollywood’s heavyweight producers and directors, with “A Beautiful Mind,” “Apollo 13,” “Frost/Nixon” and “Rush” winning plaudits.
Yet only recently has he began delving into behind-the-camera television work — but when he did, he attracted attention from the awards circuit: “Einstein: Chapter One,” the pilot episode of National Geographic biopic series “Genius,” brought him a nomination for Outsanding Direction at the 2017 Primetime Emmys.
The debut episode of “68 Whiskey” will be his second TV drama and third in total following 2015 documentary show “Breakthrough.”
Based on an existing Israeli TV show “Charlie Golf One,” it follows a group of army medics operating out of an Afghanistani base, dealing with “a dangerous and Kafkaesque world that leads to self-destructive appetites, outrageous behavior, intense camaraderie and occasionally, a profound sense of purpose,” per Deadline.
Howard will be directing from a script written by the co-creator of dark political comedy “The Brink,” Roberto Benabib, who was also involved with “Weeds” and “Ally McBeal.” The show is being produced through Imagine Entertainment, which Howard co-owns with Brian Grazer of “A Beautiful Mind,” “Apollo 13,” “Frost/Nixon” and many more.