EXCLUSIVE: Euston Films’ Kate Harwood has joined forces with Alan Gasmer and Peter Jaysen of Veritas Entertainment to bring a series of Tana French-penned murder mysteries to the international television market. The Dublin-based French won several literary prizes for her first novel, 2007’s In The Woods, and followed that up with The Likeness and Faithful Place, among others. The partners have optioned the three books which they liken to True Detective.
The novels each follow a different case and include overlapping characters who are alternately in the forefront or the background of the main story. They are set in the fictional Dublin Murder Squad and have sold more than 5 million copies worldwide.
In The Woods centers on a pair of detectives investigating the murder of a 12-year-old girl; The Likeness is about a young female detective who goes undercover to solve a murder in an elite college town; and Faithful Place advances a supporting character from The Likeness to center stage as a detective discovering dark secrets from his past.
The Likeness was previously acquired by Paramount in 2011 to be adapted as a feature. The option lapsed and the trio of Harwood, Gasmer and Jaysen pounced. This is the first time the books have been offered for television.
Harwood (Luther, Criminal Justice) is the former head of BBC Drama Production and now Managing Director of Euston, a prestige label that had gone dormant and was relaunched in 2014 as part of FremantleMedia UK. Gasmer (Vikings, Freud) and Jaysen (Fired Up) founded Veritas in 2012. The three will executive produce and are meeting with UK and U.S. broadcasters and have a list of writers in mind. The project is repped by Steve Fisher at APA, and French’s agent Darley Anderson of Darley Anderson Literary Agency.
The deals were negotiated by Robert Strent of Grubman, Shire and Meiselas, and Lucy Batcup for FremantleMedia UK. French is published in the U.S. by Viking and in the UK by Hodder.