By Wayne Harada
Screenwriter Shawn Ryan, whose short-lived ABC series, “Last Resort,” was filmed in Hawaii in 2012, will return to the Islands this year to do an untitled Fox TV series set in the pre-Statehood Honolulu of 1957.
The Territorial era drama, preceding Hawaiian statehood in 1959, will be directed by Justin Lin whose credits include “Fast and Furious” and “Better Luck Tomorrow.”
According to online websites, the Fox project deals with a “small-time Hawaiian hustler” who seeks vengeance on “the most powerful man on the island” for his brother’s murder.
Neither timetable nor cast has been announced.
Ryan, whose TV version of “Beverly Hills Cop” for CBS did not make the cut for network programming, evidently enjoyed his Hawaiian stay during the filming of 13 episodes of “Last Resort,” an underappreciated drama featuring Andre Braugher and Scott Speedman.
Sony Pictures TV, where Ryan’s production company, MiddKidd Productions, is based, will produce, with Ryan, Lin and Holmes sharing co-executive producer duties with MiddKidd’s Marney Hocyman and Daniel Woodrow of Lin’s Perfect Storm Entertainment.
Since “Resort” was canceled, he is primed for another primetime show and the Hawaiian backdrop, with a historical curve, could have nostalgia as a selling point. Hawaii became a major visitor destination after Statehood and the eventual arrival of the Jack Lord “Hawaii Five-0,” which boosted Hawaii as a major paradise and tourist destination.
Ryan remains a prolific TV artist, with a current miniseries, “Mad Dogs,” at FX, and a mining town drama lurking at HBO.
If the series flies, it would be the second drama lensed in Hawaii. CBS’ “Hawaii Five-0” is in the midst of filming its fourth season here.