Witches continue to be a hot commodity on the small screen, with Freeform confirming it would be developing the series Motherland: Fort Salem, per Deadline. The 10-episode series comes from Claws creator Eliot Laurence and executive producers Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, and Kevin Messick.
The outlet described the series, "Set in an alternate America where witches ended their persecution 300 years ago by cutting a deal with the U.S. government to fight for their country, Motherland: Fort Salem follows three young women — two of them played by Taylor Hickson and Jessica Sutton — from basic training in combat magic into early deployment. In this world, the traditional roles of gender and power are flipped, with the more dominant women on the front lines fighting looming terrorist threats that are familiar to our world — but with supernatural tactics and weapons."
"We're so excited to be able to tell this story rich with female empowerment, complex storytelling, and an incredibly creative canon," Tom Ascheim, Freeform president, shared in a statement. "While set in an alternative universe, Motherland: Fort Salem will continue the authentic and issues-driven storylines that our network is known for, and what our audience has come to expect. We are thrilled to be working with Eliot, Will, Adam and Kevin on this exceptionally creative tale and look forward to bringing this even further to life."
While names like Ferrell and McKay immediately make most viewers think of comedies, the McKay-directed Vice became one of last year's Oscar contenders, thanks to its blend of real-world drama and absurd humor. The new series will likely deliver viewers captivating drama that never shies away from leaning into the absurdity of the premise.
"So excited Freeform has given a platform to one of the most original writers working today; Eliot Laurence," McKay explained. "[Gary Sanchez Productions] has worked with Eliot for years and he has astounded us yet again with the imaginative and layered world of Motherland: Fort Salem."
Dating back to the '60s with Bewitched, through the '90s with Charmed, and currently with The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, the centuries of folklore surrounding witchcraft has made the concept rife with stories which regularly prove to be popular among audiences, which Motherland: Fort Salem hopes to tap into.
Stay tuned for details on the new series.
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