By James Hibberd
Updated July 25, 2013 at 10:10 PM EDT

David Milch is getting closer to making his HBO return.

The mad-genius creator of NYPD Blue, Deadwood and Luck is near a deal for a pilot pick-up, with preliminary casting underway. His new project is called The Money and it’s been described in agency circles as “a tale of family obligation, huge financial stakes that illustrates how one man can manipulate his family, current events and the world of business.”

HBO executives at the Television Critics Association press tour further described the pilot as the story of a “dynastic New York media family” that has a “classic Milch-ian voice.”

HBO brass was also asked if the network was no longer interested in series about animals in the wake of Luck, which was abruptly cancelled after several horses died on the set. “Yes … yes… yes,” programming president Michael Lombardo said. “There was way too much downside for us … I’m not interested in a pitch where animals are critical to the storytelling… that was a tough experience for us.”