Amazon orders James Corden comedy, drops ‘Tiger King’ drama

Amazon has ordered a six-part comedy drama with James Corden (Gavin & Stacey) set to star and dropped its planned Tiger King scripted show that had Nicolas Cage attached.

Corden’s series Mammals is being produced by UK-based Street Hassle, in association with Vertigo Films and Fulwell 73, and will be directed by Stephanie Laing (Made For Love, Physical).

The show, which explores relationships, has been written by Jez Butterworth and starts filming this month. It will become available via Amazon Prime Video around the world.

Details on the storyline are being kept under wraps, but Butterworth said: “A good marriage is the most magical thing. In a world of eight billion, you’ve found the one who gets you, ignites your body and soul. Who allows you to grow and flourish. Who gives you the spark, the confidence to become you. You’re also never going to have sex with anyone else, ever, and then you’re going to die, and be dead forever.”

The show also has Sally Hawkins (Paddington), Melia Kreiling (Filthy Rich), Colin Morgan (Humans), Henry Lloyd-Hughes (Killing Eve) and Samuel Anderson (Witless) attached to star. Stephanie Laing is series director and co-executive producer.

Georgina Lowe (Mr. Turner, Sanditon) produces, while Butterworth, Corden and co-creator James Richardson are among exec producers.

Nicholas Cage

Tiger King drama becomes ‘past tense’

The Corden commission came as Amazon canned its planned Tiger King drama, which was first revealed last year. The show had US actor Cage attached to play Joe Exotic, the subject of the hit Netflix docuseries Tiger King, who is now serving 22 years in prison due to his role in an alleged murder-for-hire plot to kill rival Carole Baskin.

However, the planned eight-episode limited drama from US-based Imagine Television Studios and CBS Television Studios is now looking for a new home after the streamer declined to move forward with the project.

Cage told Variety that he had read “two excellent scripts” for the show but added that Amazon execs “ultimately felt that it was material that had become past tense because it took so long for it come together.

“They felt at one point that it was lightning in a bottle, but that point has since faded into the distance and it’s no longer relevant.”

The project is based upon the Texas Monthly article Joe Exotic: A Dark Journey Into The Mind Of A World Gone Mad by Leif Reigstad, which was optioned by CBS TV Studios last June. American Vandal showrunner Dan Lagana had been due to helm, write and executive produce for CBS on the project.

NBCUniversal’s streamer Peacock still has its Tiger King-inspired drama starring John Cameron Mitchell in the works, while US cablenet ID ordered Investigating The Strange World Of Joe Exotic, which revolves around the tiger breeder and his role in the alleged murder plot.


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