On the heels of Blumhouse’ first longform project, Ryan Murphy’s HBO movie The Normal Heart, winning a Best TV Movie Emmy, Jason Blum’s production company is returning to the longform arena with another New York period piece based on a true story — miniseries Son of Sam. Blumhouse Prods. will develop the six-hour mini with Fox TV Studios (The Killing). Written by Steven Katz (The Knick, From the Earth to the Moon), Son of Sam juxtaposes David Richard Berkowitz’s murder confession of Satan worship and human sacrifice with the actual police investigation of December 1975-1977. For almost two years, the self-proclaimed Son of Sam terrorized New York City, killing six people while eluding a massive manhunt and taunting the police with brazen letters. The spree finally came to an end in August 1977 when Berkowitz was arrested and confessed to the crimes claiming he was possessed by demons. In the 1990s, while serving six life sentences, he recanted part of his original confession, insisting that he was part of of a Satanic cult with fellow members carrying out some of the killings, but those claims were never substantiated. On screen, the case was the focus of Spike Lee’s 1999 movie Summer of Son, and the 1985 CBS movie Out of the Darkness. Blum and CAA-repped Katz executive produce the mini with Dan Halsted of Manage-ment (Nixon). Blumhouse’s head of television Jessica Rhoades co-exec produces.
Son of Sam falls outside the 10-year first-look production deal Blumhouse recently inked with NBCUniversal, which includes TV pacts with Universal TV and Universal Cable Prods. Blumhouse, the company behind micro-budget film franchises Paranormal Activity, Insidious, The Purge and Sinister, has been ramping up its television business. It produced the ABC drama series The River and the Syfy reality series Stranded and co-produced the Emmy-winning Normal Heart with HBO, Brad Pitt’s Plan B and Ryan Murphy Prods. The company is in production on the Syfy miniseries Ascension, MTV drama series Eye Candy and WE tv drama series South of Hell. Blumhouse’s development slate includes Gillian Flynn’s Sharp Objects with eOne and an unscripted show with Mike Darnell. On the feature side, Blumhouse produced feature Whiplash, which won both the Grand Jury and Audience prizes at Sundance and will be released this fall by Sony Pictures Classics. FtvS just received a straight-to-series order from Lifetime for Damien, a followup series to The Omen.