Netflix’s Chinatown series is reportedly on hold while David Fincher focuses on a Squid Game remake

An official screenshot from Netflix's Squid Game TV show
(Image credit: Noh Juhan)

A TV show adaptation of Chinatown has reportedly been in the works since 2019 but it looks to be finally making good progress as the original screenwriter of the 1974 movie, Robert Towne, has revealed that all episodes have now been written. This is good news for those of us who have been patiently waiting for it to arrive on Netflix.

The series sees Towne teaming up with David Fincher, who has already seen success on the best streaming service with Mindhunter making it into our recommended crime thrillers and his movie Mank securing a place in our best Netflix movies list thanks to its 83% Rotten Tomatoes score.

In an interview with Variety to mark the 50th anniversary of the film, Towne said: “All I’m likely to say is yes, all the episodes have been written for Netflix. Working with a force of nature like David Fincher, [although] occasionally humbling, is never less than enlightening.”

We don’t know much about the plot yet, but he added: “When David and I first started talking we agreed we wouldn’t try to replicate [villain] Noah Cross. But we did want to keep in mind that the crimes that history considers monstrous are those that will not remain in the past but insist on visiting the future, and I think we managed that.”

What else is David Fincher working on for Netflix? 

But with a big question mark hovering over Chinatown’s release on the streamer, there’s another Fincher project that might overtake it, and it might also surprise you, because the movie legend is reportedly set to direct a Squid Game remake.

Considering English language remakes are often met with criticism (looking at you Oldboy), it will be interesting to see how fans respond to this one. According to The Playlist, Fincher has been “quietly working” on a Squid Game remake and has recently hired British writer Dennis Kelly, known for his work on titles like Utopia and Matilda the Musical.

At the time of writing,there’s no clear release window for Chinatown or Squid Game – both of which have the potential to be among the best Netflix shows – so we will have to wait for official confirmation on when they’ll be arriving. We do, however, know that Squid Game season 2 will land on the streamer at the end of the year with an exact release date yet to be confirmed, so at least we’ve got the original series on the way.

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Lucy Buglass
Senior Entertainment Writer

Lucy is a long-time movie and television lover who is an approved critic on Rotten Tomatoes. She has written several reviews in her time, starting with a small self-ran blog called Lucy Goes to Hollywood before moving onto bigger websites such as What's on TV and What to Watch, with TechRadar being her most recent venture. Her interests primarily lie within horror and thriller, loving nothing more than a chilling story that keeps her thinking moments after the credits have rolled. Many of these creepy tales can be found on the streaming services she covers regularly.

When she’s not scaring herself half to death with the various shows and movies she watches, she likes to unwind by playing video games on Easy Mode and has no shame in admitting she’s terrible at them. She also quotes The Simpsons religiously and has a Blinky the Fish tattoo, solidifying her position as a complete nerd.