The eight-part series, which will begin filming this summer, is a co-production between HBO, Sky and Canal +. "The Young Pope," according to the online industry source, "tells the story of the beginning of the Pontificate of Pius XIII, born Lenny Belardo (Law). He was a complex and conflicted character, so conservative in his choices as to border on obscurantism, yet full of compassion towards the weak and poor. This Pope is a man of great power who’s stubbornly resistant to the Vatican courtiers, unconcerned with the implications for his authority. During the series, Belardo will face losing those closest to him and the constant fear of being abandoned, even by his God. A man who is, however, not afraid of undertaking the millennial mission of defending that same God and the world representing Him."
The production will film primarily in Italy with the United States, Africa and Puerto Rico as other locations.
In a statement writer Sorrentino said, "The clear signs of God’s existence. The clear signs of God’s absence. How faith can be searched for and lost. The greatness of holiness, so great as to be unbearable when you are fighting temptations and when all you can do is to yield to them. The inner struggle between the huge responsibility of the Head of the Catholic Church and the miseries of the simple man that fate (or the Holy Spirit) chose as Pontiff. Finally, how to handle and manipulate power in a state whose dogma and moral imperative is the renunciation of power and selfless love towards one’s neighbor. That is what 'The Young Pope' is about."