Last August, Daniels announced he’d signed to The Brian Banks Story for Amy Baer‘s Gidden Media. Profiled in a 60 Minutes piece, Banks was a high school All-America football player who had committed to USC’s program in 2002 — a plan got got derailed when a classmate accused him of rape. He maintained his innocence, but a plea bargain resulted in a five-year-plus prison sentence. With the help of the California Innocence Project, his conviction was overturned in 2012. Returning to the gridiron after a 10-year hiatus, he played in the UFL and went through six NFL tryouts before making the Atlanta Falcons’ roster in April 2013; he played in four pre-season games. Banks now is a motivational speakers/spokesman for the California Innocence Project.Peacock Prods announced today it had signed “exoneree Brian Banks” to develop the new unscripted series, investigating one potential case of wrongful conviction per season.
“Brian has unique insight into the complex world of the criminal justice system,” said Peacock Productions GM and president Sharon Scott noted Banks has “unique insight” into the criminal justice system; Banks, returne teh compliment, noting, “Peacock Productions is renowned for its expertise in the true-crime narrative.”
Peacock Productions has stiff competition in the race to land its project among the 100 Best Reality Series Tapping Into The Serial Podcast Success.
Last month, for instance, Undercover Boss producer Studio Lambert/All3Media announced it had teamed with former detective James Trainum, who served as a consultant on the actual Serial podcast, for the real-time crime-investigation series True Conviction. Like Serial, True Conviction would focus on a single homicide during the course of an entire season. Episodes will air in near real-time as the investigation unfolds. Trainum, now a private consultant, is a former detective with 27 years of law enforcement experience with the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan police and a nationally recognized expert on wrongful convictions. The producers had identified several cases for the potential series, which was shopped at Realscreen reality-TV confab in Washington, D.C. — which this year was a sort of Serial Knockoff Palooza.
“Previously, everybody thought that you couldn’t sustain an audience’s engagement over an entire season with just one case,” Greg Goldman, President of Studio Lambert told Deadline last month ” The podcast Serial proved that notion wrong; people crave the gritty details that you can only explore with an arced series.”