Epix has greenlit a six-episode adaptation of Slate’s hit podcast Slow Burn, a series that explored the Watergate scandal and how it eventually led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon. Podcast host Leon Neyfakh will be an executive producer and narrator for the series.
The series is expected to launch in late 2019 on Epix. Slate launched the eight-episode podcast series in 2017 which drew parallels between the slowly-building scandal that tanked the Nixon Administration, and that of the ongoing investigations into President Donald Trump. The series has earned widespread acclaim, and recently took home the Podcast of the Year at iHeartRadio’s inaugural Podcast Awards last month.
Slate produced a second season of Slow Burn last year that followed another presidential scandal: the impeachment of President Bill Clinton, which we called one of the best podcasts of 2018. Following the second season, Neyfakh left Slate to work on his own podcast, Fiasco, which will be all about the 2000 Presidential Election and the Supreme Court case Bush v. Gore, and is expected to launch sometime this spring. A second season will follow the events of the Iran-Contra Scandal. Slate is expected to continue Slow Burn with a third season and with a new host sometime this year.
The pickup is another example of an ongoing trend in the entertainment industry as numerous hit podcasts are snapped up for adaptations, and podcast networks like Gimlet Media (which was just acquired by music streaming service Spotify), have worked not only to develop podcasts, but standalone intellectual property that can yield new revenue down the road. The medium makes sense as a test-bed for future adaptations: they’re relatively cheap (compared to that of a television pilot) to produce, and already come in a serialized format. Slow Burn now joins the growing list of shows that have been (or will be) turned into a television show, like Homecoming, Lore, or Welcome to Nightvale.