EXCLUSIVE: In a competitive situation, John Wells Productions has landed the rights to Danya Kukafka’s recently published suspense thriller novel Notes on an Execution for series adaptation.
The novel, released just last month, tells the story of a serial killer in his last hours on death row through the eyes of the women in his life.
Per the description, Notes on an Execution presents a chilling portrait of womanhood as it simultaneously unravels the familiar narrative of the American serial killer, interrogating our system of justice, our cultural obsession with crime stories, and challenges audiences to consider the false promise of looking for meaning in the psyches of violent men.
“Danya’s novel had us on the edge of our seats with its propulsive writing while also moving us with its powerful commentary,” said Erin Jontow, President of TV, John Wells Productions. “Everyone at John Wells Productions devoured the book and our colleagues kept checking to see how the negotiations were going! John and I are so thrilled to work with Danya and future collaborators on making this incredible novel come to life in series.”
Wells and Jontow executive produce. Kukafka also is credited as an executive producer.
John Wells Productions most recently optioned the rights to the three-book crime series The High Coast from Swedish author Tove Alsterdal, and is currently in production on its modern Hawaii drama Ke Nui Road for HBO Max and Warner Bros Television. JWP’s multi-nominated series Maid, starring Margaret Qualley, has become one of Netflix’s most successful series of all time.
“I am so excited to partner with John, Erin, and the brilliant team at John Wells Productions,” said Kukafka. “They’ve already brought such clarity of vision to the project, such insight and richness to the world of the novel — I can’t wait to see these characters on screen. This collaboration is such a dream.”
The deal was negotiated by CAA and Ned Haspel at John Wells Productions.
Kukafka, also the author of the bestselling Girl In Snow, is repped by Dana Murphy at The Book Group, CAA, and foreign rights by Jenny Meyer at Jenny Meyer Literary Agency.
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