Kari Skogland to direct Showtime series starring Russell Crowe as late Fox News chief Roger Ailes

Skogland, who is currently the only woman Emmy nominee for the Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for her work on The Handmaid’s Tale, has also won a BAFTA award


                            Kari Skogland to direct Showtime series starring Russell Crowe as late Fox News chief Roger Ailes

Showtime has announced that Emmy nominee Kari Skogland (The Handmaid’s Tale) will direct the first two episodes of the network’s eight-episode limited series about Fox News founder Roger Ailes, based on the extensive reporting of Gabriel Sherman in his bestselling book, 'The Loudest Voice in the Room'. The series will star Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Russell Crowe (Gladiator, A Beautiful Mind) in the title role. 

Skogland is returning to Showtime where she has previously directed shows including Penny Dreadful, The Borgias, The L Word and Queer as Folk. The announcement regarding the show was made on Friday by Gary Levine, President of Programming, Showtime Networks.

Skogland, who is currently the only woman Emmy nominee for the Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for her work on The Handmaid’s Tale, has also won a BAFTA award for the series. She has also shared five Directors Guild of Canada awards for The Borgias, Sons of Liberty, Vikings, Fifty Dead Men Walking and Terminal City.

Skogland’s numerous directing credits also include The Americans, Condor, House of Cards, Tyrant, Power, Copper, Longmire, The Killing, Boardwalk Empire, La Femme Nikita, The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead.

Roger Ailes arguably became the Republican Party’s de facto leader (Getty Images)
Roger Ailes arguably became the Republican Party’s de facto leader (Getty Images)

In today’s politically-charged media landscape, no figure loomed larger, even after his passing, than Roger Ailes, molding Fox News into a force that irrevocably changed the conversation about the highest levels of government. To understand the events that led to the rise of Donald Trump, one must understand Ailes.

The upcoming limited series takes on that challenge, focusing primarily on the past decade in which Ailes arguably became the Republican Party’s de facto leader, while flashing back to defining events in Ailes’ life, including an initial meeting with Richard Nixon on the set of The Mike Douglas Show that gave birth to Ailes’ political career and the sexual harassment accusations and settlements that brought his Fox News reign to an end.

Told through multiple points of view, the limited series aims to shed light on the psychology that drives the political process from the top down. Sherman co-wrote the initial episode of the limited series with Oscar winner Tom McCarthy (Spotlight). For the primary source material, The Loudest Voice in the Room, Sherman interviewed more than 600 people.

The project is a co-production from Showtime and Blumhouse Television (Sharp Objects, The Normal Heart). Tom McCarthy will executive produce with Emmy winner Jason Blum and Alex Metcalf, along with Marci Wiseman and Jeremy Gold for Blumhouse Television.