Too Old to Die Young: Nicolas Winding Refn’s Amazon Crime Series Will Be Lengthy

Nicolas Winding Refn's L.A. crime series, Too Old To Die Young, is heading to Amazon Prime in 2019.

Too Old to Die Young, a developing Amazon Prime crime series, is proof (as if we needed it at this point,) of just how big streaming-exclusive TV content has become. Indeed, distinguished Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn has spent the past two years working with Amazon for the 10-episode television project.

Yep, that’s the same Nicolas Winding Refn that directed the sumptuous cinematic treats The Neon Demon, Drive, Only God Forgives and the Pusher films. However, Refn has been on the sidelines since the June 2016 release of Neon Demon, with Variety having first broken the news in February 2017 of this peak television collaboration between the indie darling and the streaming service. Los Angeles’ illegal drug business. The show is said to be not unlike Refn’s excellent Pusher trilogy, which told the story of Danish criminals in the country’s drug trade. 

The series will be headlined by Miles Teller – of the Oscar-winning Whiplash and the Divergent film series – showcasing the seedy underbelly of Los Angeles. True to Refn’s past work, things are expected to get a bit weird, with the initial report hinting that we can expect existential journeys, killers, and… a character becoming a samurai. Perhaps we’ll even get a bit of good ol’ cannibalism?

In the latest news, details about Amazon’s Too Old to Die Young have emerged via Refn’s repertory collaborator, film composer Cliff Martinez, in an interview with Screen Daily (via IndieWire).

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While we already knew that the series was a 10-episode affair from the outset, Martinez reveals that each episode will span around 90 minutes, rendering the overall experience into a 900-minute affair or a 15-16-hour movie. As Martinez tells the outlet:

“I warned Nic Winding Refn, you better drink a lot of coffee and get a lot of sleep when you can. My experience with television is that it’s just relentless. [Production for] To Old To Die Young has gone on for a year; for me the challenge has been to not get burned out and jaded and complacent, but to try to stay engaged and focused for that much time. As far as streaming goes, I don’t know that the way the material’s delivered makes a big difference to me.”

The story of Too Old to Die Young centers on a protagonist played by Miles Teller, a grieving police officer who’s investigating assassins in L.A.’s criminal underworld, which consist of cartels, Yakuza and Russian gangsters. Joining Teller in the cast are names such as Billy Baldwin, Jena Malone, John Hawkes, Nell Tiger Free, Celestino Cornielle, August Aguilera, Babs Olusanmokun and Callie Hernandez.

Refn is directing and producing the whole series, having co-written the scripts with comic book legend Ed Brubaker, whose foray into TV began with a supervising producer role on Westworld. Brubaker also happens to be a master of the crime genre, so this is an absolute match made in heaven. 

Too Old to Die Young will premiere on Amazon Prime Video sometime in 2019.

Joseph Baxter is a contributor for Den of Geek and Syfy Wire. You can find his work here. Follow him on Twitter @josbaxter.