Ridley Scott & Showtime Explore ‘The Vatican’

Showtime orders a contemporary drama set in the very heart of the Catholic church.

Blair Marnellby Blair Marnell

Rodrigo Borgia may no longer be the only pontiff on Showtime’s programming slate.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Showtime has ordered a pilot for a contemporary thriller called “The Vatican;” which will focus on “the relationships and rivalries, in addition to the mysteries and miracles…  set against the modern-day political machinations within the Catholic church.”

Ridley Scott is executive producing “The Vatican” and directing the pilot from a script by series creator, Paul Attanasio. Showtime currently broadcasts “The Borgias;” which also explores the intrigue of the Papacy during the corrupt reign of Pope Alexander VI in the 16th century.

Scott is best known for directing several iconic films, including the original Alien, Blade Runner, Thelma & Louise, Gladiator and Black Hawk Down. Scott recently directed Prometheus and he executive produces the CBS drama, “The Good Wife.” “The Vatican” will be the first time that Scott has directed for television.

Paul Attanasio is the co-creator of “House,” and the creator of “Gideon’s Crossing” who also wrote the screenplays for The Sum of All Fears, Donnie Brasco, Quiz Show and Disclosure.

“The Vatican” is expected to begin production in 2013.