Brow Beat

David Simon Is Adapting Philip Roth’s The Plot Against America, About Life Under a Xenophobic, Anti-Semitic President, Into a Miniseries

David Simon speaks onstage during 69th Writers Guild Awards.
Simon confirmed the news on Twitter. Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

The Wire creator David Simon has confirmed on Twitter that he is adapting Philip Roth’s famous novel The Plot Against America into a six-part miniseries. The confirmation followed a profile of Roth in the New York Times that mentioned that Simon and Roth had met to discuss the book and its adaptation.

Simon added that he is still shopping his adaptation around to different networks.

The Plot Against America imagines an alternate history of World War II in which Charles Lindbergh, the famed aviator and member of the isolationist America First Committee, runs for president and defeats Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the 1940 election. His administration strikes a deal with Germany and Japan that keeps the U.S. out of the war and leads to the rise of widespread, state-sanctioned anti-Semitism in America.

There has been no shortage of comparisons between Lindbergh’s fictional, fascistic presidency and the election of Donald Trump—particularly given that Trump has invoked the slogan “America First”—but Roth wrote last year (and reaffirmed in his Times profile) that “it is easier to comprehend the election of an imaginary President like Charles Lindbergh than an actual President like Donald Trump.” He also suggested that Trump’s presidency could better be understood by a different novel: Herman Melville’s The Confidence-Man.