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Martin Scorsese and Benicio Del Toro Bring 'Cortes' to HBO

HBO is developing Cortes, a historical drama from a team that includes Martin Scorcese and Benicio Del Toro, Deadline reports.

Scorcese, who previously kicked off Boardwalk Empire for the network, will direct the series from a script by Chris Gerolmo (Mississippi Burning). Del Toro is eyeing a lead role as an Aztec conqueror. All three are attached as executive producers.

The series will follow Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes, his Mayan conspirator La Malinche and betrayed Aztec leader Montezuma. Like many historical figures, Cortes' legacy is filled with controversy. The deed he is lauded for -- adding Mexico to the Spanish Empire -- also makes him responsible for the utter destruction of the Aztec civilization.

The project will reunite Del Toro with his Che producing partner Laura Bickford, who joins Cortes as executive producer. No timetable has been set for Cortes production.

This marks the second series Scorsese is working on for HBO, the first being an adaptation of his feature film Shutter Island. Scorsese is also expected to direct the pilot episode of that series.

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