Steven Spielberg will be the executive producer of Cortes, a new four-hour miniseries, for Amazon Prime Video subscribers. Based on a screenplay by the late Dalton Trumbo, the miniseries is written by Academy Award-winning screenwriter Steven Zaillian (Schilder’s List). Javier Bardem (No Country for Old men) will play the lead of Cortes in the series.
The series is based on the life of the legendary conqueror Hernan Cortes and his rebellious expedition towards the Aztec emperor
Montezuma and how it put the two great civilizations in contact for the first time in history. “As an actor, there is no better challenge than to serve such a unique project that I have been passionate about for years, and I am thrilled to be working with this dream team”, Bardem remarked about the project. The story was originally written by Trumbo in the 1960s after he was blacklisted from film-making. The project was later revived in 2014 under DreamWorks with talks with Spielberg to direct and Bardem to star in it. However, in the miniseries format, it is unclear whether Spielberg will be directing.
It is however confirmed that Spielberg and Amblin Television will executive produce the miniseries with Bardem, Zaillian, and Amblin co-heads Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey. This move to an online streaming provider comes as a shock to many as Spielberg had earlier publicly slammed Netflix’s film-distribution model as a threat to the movie-theatre model.