The Weinstein Co. had been touting its partnership with the Elvis Presley estate to produce the rocker’s first-ever TV biopic to be shot at Graceland. But it appears that may not be happening now, as Apple Music, where the project was set up, confirmed Monday that instead it had been scrapped.
The project, first announced in September 2016, was still in the early stages of development. But it represents the latest major fall out from the still unfolding Harvey Weinstein scandal, and comes as The Weinstein Co. mulls its entire future as a production company.
According to Deadline, which first broke the news, Weinstein Co. COO David Glasser is now shopping the series elsewhere, including to another network that had previously been outbid by Apple. It’s important to note that the Elvis show had been in the works at Apple Music prior to the launch of a new TV division now being created by former Sony execs Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg.
The Elvis series was part of a plan to chronicle several music legends in future installments, including Michael Jackson. The scripted Elvis biopic was set to be an eight- to 10-part series about every aspect of Elvis’ life, and had access to all of his personal archives including journals, clothing, automobiles, and his Graceland home.
“I’m a big fan of Harvey Weinstein’s independent films,” Priscilla Presley said at the time. “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to work with him on this show and tell the story of how Elvis changed the culture of music and initiated a revolution that changed the world.”
The series was to be based on the book “Elvis,” by Dave Marsh. Priscilla Presley, Jerry Schilling, Harvey Weinstein and David Glasser had been signed as executive producers.
Even if it moves forward, it’s unlikely Weinstein would remain attached. The Weinstein Co. has pulled Weinstein’s name as executive producer off the company’s existing and upcoming TV projects, including Lifetime’s “Project Runway,” MTV’s “Scream,” History’s “Six” and Paramount Network’s “Waco” and “Yellowstone.”
The Weinstein scandal is of particular concern to the Paramount Network, which is relaunching and rebranding from Spike TV in January with the major TV event “Waco.” By that point, the Weinstein Co. may have a new name however, and at that point the scandal may have faded from some memory.
That’s because Weinstein Co. is reportedly looking at a potential name change. It has also removed Harvey Weinstein’s name from the upcoming film release “The Current War.” Weinstein was fired from the company on Sunday in light of several damning accusations of sexual harassment and assault, as well as evidence that the mogul attempted to thwart an internal investigation of his actions.