AMC Greenlights Two New Dramas, 'Halt & Catch Fire' & 'Turn' - Updated

Categories: Cable TV

Written By

July 26th, 2013

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AMC has ordered two new dramas Halt & Catch Fire and Turn. This marks the first time the channel has picked up two scripted programs in one cycle. Halt & Catch Fire chronicles the rise of the personal computer during the early 1980s through the eyes of the pioneers of the computer industry, making it a Binary Boys to the network's flagship Mad Men. Turn is about a group of young spies during 1778 who play a vital role in the American Revolution.

Update: Here is AMC's official press release about the new series.



“Halt & Catch Fire,” From AMC Studios, Creator Chris Cantwell & Chris Rogers,

Showrunner Jonathan Lisco, Executive Producer Gran Via’s Mark Johnson (“Breaking Bad,” “Rectify,” Diner, Rain Man) and Melissa Bernstein (“Breaking Bad”)


“Turn,” From AMC Studios, Writer and Showrunner Craig Silverstein (“Nikita”) Executive Producer Barry Josephson (“Bones,” Enchanted)


New York – July 26, 2013 – AMC announced today series orders for the scripted dramas “Halt & Catch Fire” and “Turn.” This is the first time the network has ordered two scripted series concurrently. Production on each is scheduled for 4th quarter 2013 with both expected to premiere on AMC in 2014.


“The simultaneous greenlights today are the first in network history and underscore AMC’s growth and commitment to original scripted programming,” said Joel Stillerman, AMC’s EVP of original programming, production and digital content. “Each of these projects takes the audience into a unique world through compelling characters told with an original voice. We are so fortunate to be working with such exceptional talent on these series and can’t wait to bring them to viewers.”


Set in the early 1980s, “Halt & Catch Fire” dramatizes the personal computing boom through the eyes of a visionary, an engineer and a prodigy whose innovations directly confront the corporate behemoths of the time. Their personal and professional partnerships are challenged by greed and ego while charting the changing culture in Texas' Silicon Prairie. From AMC Studios, “Halt & Catch Fire” is created by Chris Cantwell and Chris Rogers from a pilot directed by Juan Campanella (The Secret In Their Eyes). Jonathan Lisco has joined the series as showrunner and Mark Johnson (“Breaking Bad,” “Rectify,” Diner, Rain Man) and Melissa Bernstein (“Breaking Bad” and “Rectify”) from Gran Via Productions also serve as executive producers. The series stars Lee Pace (Lincoln, “Pushing Daisies”) as Joe McMillan, Scoot McNairy (Argo) as Gordan Clark, Mackenzie Rio Davis (Smashed) as Cameron Howe, Kerry Bishe (Argo, Red State) as Donna Clark, Toby Huss (Cowboys & Aliens) as John Bosworth and David Wilson Barnes (The Bourne Legacy, “You Don’t Know Jack”) as Dave Butler.


Based on the book “Washington’s Spies,” written by Alexander Rose, “Turn” is set in the summer of 1778 and tells the story of  New York farmer, Abe Woodhull, who bands together with a group of childhood friends to form The Culper Ring, an unlikely group of spies who turn the tide in America’s fight for independence. “Turn,” also from AMC Studios, was developed and written by Craig Silverstein (“Nikita”) who also serves as series showrunner. The pilot was directed by Rupert Wyatt (Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes). Barry Josephson (“Bones,” Enchanted) from Josephson Entertainment is executive producer.  The series stars Jamie Bell (Billy Elliot, King Kong, The Adventures of Tintin) as Abraham Woodhull, Kevin McNally (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides) as Judge Richard Woodhull, Burn Gorman (The Dark Knight Rises) as Major Hewlett, Daniel Henshall (The Snowtown Murders) as Caleb, Seth Numrich (“The Good Wife”) as Ben Talmadge, Angus MacFadyen (Braveheart) as Robert Rogers, JJ Feild (Captain America: The First Avenger) as Major John Andre, Meegan Warner as Mary Woodhull and Heather Lind (“Boardwalk Empire”) as Anna Strong.


The announcement comes on the heels of the network’s recent pilot order for “Line of Sight,” a co-production from Fox Television Studios (FTVS) and AMC Studios from writer, creator and executive producer Blake Masters (“Brotherhood,” “Rubicon,” 2 Guns). This August, AMC premieres its newest original series, ‘Low Winter Sun,” from writer, executive producer and showrunner Chris Mundy (“Criminal Minds,” “Cold Case”), a co-production from Endemol Studios and AMC Studios.


AMC’s Stillerman, Susie Fitzgerald, SVP of scripted development and current programming and Jason Fisher, SVP of production, will oversee the pilots’ development and production.


About AMC

Whether commemorating favorite films from every genre and decade or creating acclaimed original programming, AMC brings to its audience something deeper, something richer, Something More. The network reigns as the only cable network in history ever to win the Emmy® Award for Outstanding Drama Series four years in a row, and boasts the most-watched drama series in basic cable history with “The Walking Dead.” AMC’s original drama series include “Mad Men,” “Breaking Bad,” “The Walking Dead,” “The Killing” and “Hell on Wheels.” Its newest series, “Low Winter Sun,” premieres this summer.  AMC also explores authentic worlds with bold characters through its slate of unscripted original series like “Comic Book Men,” “Small Town Security,” “Talking Dead,” and “Freakshow.” AMC is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc. and its sister networks include IFC, Sundance Channel, and WE tv. AMC is available across all platforms, including on-air, online, on demand and mobile. AMC: Something More.

  • TahaTheKid

    Very interesting … Mainly when we appreciate the excellent quality of AMC’s dramas (Breaking Bad, Mad Men, The Walking Dead …)

  • John

    Wonder what this means for The Killing and Hell on Wheels? Will both be cancelled now?

  • Mike

    Are the other ANC pilots still in contention

  • BiPolarPoet


  • Pepper

    Both of those sound really dull, to be quite honest. I’m sure they’ll both be hits and get lots of Emmys but I probably won’t be watching

  • A.C.

    What is going on with THE TERROR novel from Dan Simmons that AMC was suppose to turn into a series. It sounded great. There was an annoucement in February and no new since!

  • WylieCoyote

    Regarding The Killing and Hell On Wheels, the two new series above start in 2014. Breaking Bad ends this year and Mad Men will next year. TK has been pretty strong this season, despite the ratings numbers, and HOW is in the Saturday timeslot. TK should at least be renewed, in my opinion, and HOW remains to be seen. The two new shows and Low Winter Sun have plenty of leg room.

  • james

    two shows set in the past? :/ no thanks.

  • Brian

    Both are quite intriguing and can be very good if done right.

    A high school teacher turned meth cooker and an advertising agency in the 1960’s both sounded pretty dull. AMC hasn’t produced a bad show yet and with two great shows (Breaking Bad & Mad Men) as well as a monster hit (The Walking Dead) I’ll be giving them the benefit of the doubt and watch both shows.

  • Owen

    I’ll definitely try both. They sound like they have a lot of potential.

  • Sunny

    TURN sounds really intriguing to me, while I would have to see a trailer for Halt and Catch Fire to see if it would interest me…

  • reallypeople


    The pickups have nothing to do with Hell On Wheels. It’s on Saturdays (apparently a new night for original programming) and operates in its own sphere. I guess they could put something behind it, eventually, but it’s doubtful.

    And as someone else mentioned… BB and MM are ending in the near future, The Killing’s ratings are abysmal and warrant yet another cancellation, and all their reality shows are failures. If anything, AMC needs to acquire more programming to fill in the holes along with these two shows.

  • Percy

    So is Ballistic City not getting picked up now? :(

  • Wallaby2012

    Both sound great! I’ll tune in for sure.

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