Vera Farmiga has been tapped as the lead in Five Days At Memorial, Apple TV+’s limited series from John Ridley, Carlton Cuse and ABC Signature. The project, which chronicles events in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, reunites former Bates Motel star Farmiga with the Psycho prequel’s co-creator/executive producer Cuse.
Written by Ridley and Cuse based on the acclaimed nonfiction book by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Sheri Fink, Five Days at Memorial chronicles the first five days in a New Orleans hospital after Hurricane Katrina made landfall. When the floodwaters rose, the power failed and the heat climbed, exhausted caregivers were forced to make life-and-death decisions that haunted them for years to come.
Farmiga will play the role of Dr. Anna Pou, the doctor on duty at Memorial when the storm hit.
Ultimately, 40 dead bodies were found in the hospital. The book looks to answer the question of whether medical staff at Memorial, led by Dr. Pou, euthanized critically ill patients after being trapped in the hospital for days without power. It also focuses on an attempt to prosecute Pou and two nurses for homicide after an investigation showed elevated levels of morphine and other drugs in 23 patients who had died at the hospital over the five-day period during Katrina.
Sarah Paulson was attached to play Dr. Pou in a previous planned adaptation of Fink’s book under the American Crime Story banner, which did not come to fruition at FX.
Five Days At Memorial will be written and executive produced by Ridley and Cuse, and both will serve as directors on the limited series. ABC Signature is the studio. Author Fink will serve as producer.
Oscar-nominated Farmiga has earned two Emmy nominations to date, for Bates Motel and for When They See Us. She is currently in production on Marvel’s Hawkeye series for Disney+. In features, she next stars in both Conjuring 3 opposite Patrick Wilson, set to be released on June 4, 2021; and the Sopranos prequel, The Many Saints of Newark, set to be released on September 24, 2021. Farmiga is repped by CAA, Authentic Talent and Literary Management and Peikoff Mahan Law Office.