Alexander Payne steps down from HBO miniseries Landscapers

Sam Barsanti
·1 min read
Alexander Payne
Alexander Payne

According to Deadline, Alexander Payne has stepped down from directing and executive producing the upcoming HBO/Sky miniseries Landscapers, which is a “blackly comic true-crime drama” based on a true story. The four-episode series will star Olivia Colman as Susan Edwards, a British woman who, along with her husband, murdered her parents and managed to hide their bodies in a backyard. It was made with “extensive research,” including “hours of interviews and direct access to the accused.”

Will Sharpe, who directed Flowers, is stepping in to replace Payne, and a spokesperson says that a scheduling issue is to blame for Payne’s departure (apparently he’s making a “2021 original feature project… that has seasonal filming requirements.” Timing-wise, this is all happening a little over a month after Payne denied sexual misconduct allegations that had been raised by Rose McGowan, who said back in August that Payne had shown her a “soft-core porn movie” that he made under a different name for Showtime back in the ‘80s when she was only 15, adding, “you left me on a street corner afterwards.” Payne noted in his denial that he had never directed anything, “lurid or otherwise,” in the timeframe that McGowan mentioned, though he says they did meet in 1991 when she auditioned for a Playboy Channel thing Payne was making (which would’ve made her 17 or 18).