Jenji Kohan, the creator of Weeds and Orange Is the New Black, is developing a “provocative period drama” about the Salem witch trials for HBO.
The untitled Salem period drama explores the circumstances surrounding one of the most compelling chapters in American history, when intolerance and repression set neighbor against neighbor and led a town to mass hysteria. [The Hollywood Reporter]
We don’t know much more about the show, except that Kohan will write the pilot script along with Bruce Miller (ER, Eureka) and Tracy Miller. American Horror Story: Coven, the supernatural horror show on FX, has made references to the Salem witch trials this past season and Brannon Braga (24, Star Trek: The Next Generation) has a new supernatural drama called Salem in the works that will premiere on WGN America in 2014. Unlike these other shows, Kohan’s project seems much more grounded in reality.
Kohan has done such a great job with Orange Is the New Black, so it’ll be interesting to see what she comes up with for this new show, especially since she’s proven that she can write complex, three-dimensional fictional women. HBO’s shows receive a huge budget, as well, with the pilot for Boardwalk Empire – the network’s only period drama at the moment – costing $18 million.