Before it decides which television projects to bring to series, Amazon Studios usually organizes its pilots in competitive seasons, during which viewers can decide which shows they enjoy the most. With its latest pickup, however, Amazon is skipping the public pilot presentation altogether. Variety has reported Amazon’s decision to greenlight Trial, a courtroom drama that will star Billy Bob Thornton and William Hurt.
In Trial, Thorton will star as a disgraced attorney who must argue against his former colleague (Hurt) in a wrongful death case. Olivia Thirlby (Juno, Dredd) will appear as a young, prodigious lawyer. David E. Kelley, known for his work on legal dramas like The Practice, Boston Legal, and Ally McBeal, is the series’ creator.
As with other recent series presented by Amazon, Trial is the sort of show that could make some noise come awards season. Both Hurt and Thornton have received nominations at the Academy Award and the Emmys; Thronton’s Emmy nomination came just last year, for his role in Fargo.
Variety has characterized Trial as the first program to receive a direct-to-series order from Amazon Studios. The series’ release date has not yet been announced.