Jesse Stone fans’ prayers have been answered — after a three-year break, the popular Jesse Stone TV movie franchise will resume with its signature star, Tom Selleck, on a new network, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. Hallmark has picked up Jesse Stone: Lost In Paradise, a ninth movie in the detective series, which is in pre-production in Halifax, Nova Scotia for a fall 2015 premiere. The previous eight movies aired on CBS, which opted not to order more after No. 8, Jesse Stone: Benefit Of The Doubt, despite its respectable premiere viewership, 13 million.
The broadcast networks have pulled away from original movies. CBS also dropped the venerable Hallmark Hall Of Fame franchise in 2011 after 16 years. After a three-year run on ABC, HHF last year moved to Hallmark Channel. With both HHF and the Jesse Stone films, Hallmark already had been airing reruns of the previously produced installments to solid ratings.
“Just about anywhere I go, people come up to me and ask ‘When can I see the next Jesse Stone?” said Selleck. “Thanks to Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, I can happily say it’s coming soon.”
Back as producer of Jesse Stone: Lost In Paradise is Sony Pictures TV, which has been behind every movie in the franchise. Sony TV is producing Lost In Paradise with Brandman Productions, Inc. and TWS Productions II.
Based on the bestselling books by Robert B. Parker, the Jesse Stone movies chronicle the cases of fictional Police Chief Jesse Stone of Paradise, MA, a respected and well-liked cop whose life is complicated equally by alcohol and his relationship with his ex-wife. In Lost In Paradise, written/executive produced by Michael Brandman and Selleck, Stone agrees to help the Massachusetts State Homicide Division track down a brutal serial killer.