One of Johnny Depp's upcoming projects is a film based on the West Memphis Three, a trio of teenagers wrongly convicted for the murder of three eight-year-old boys in West Memphis, Arkansas in 1993. The film will be based on an untitled memoir from the West Memphis Three's Damien Echols. There are also other films based on the case in the works, including Devil’s Knot, from the book of the same name by Mara Leveritt, to be directed by Atom Egoyan. Reece Witherspoon was already on board to star, and this week, British Oscar winning actor Colin Firth joined the cast.
One of the projects Western Edge Productions has in the pipeline is A Visit To America, written by Owen Sheers (Resistance), a film noir about a private detective in 1953 Manhattan who has to follow visiting Welsh poet Dylan Thomas. The studio is eyeing a film franchise about a female detective, a seemingly normal museum worker who becomes involved in deadly international intrigue
Dan Angel (Door to Door) is developing the multimedia YA thriller Dark Eden Patrick Carman into a series of movies with multimedia components. The book contains still images, audio recordings, videos, scans, and text entries and also transmits new episodes sequentially as the story unfolds, via mobile app.
New Zealand author Paul Cleave's debut novel, The Cleaner, has been optioned for film adaptation by European filmmakers Stone Angels.
The BBC has cast Gillian Anderson (The X-Files) in The Fall as a Metropolitan detective superintendent sent to Belfast to conduct a review of a high profile murder case. The crime drama will follow a police investigation that uncovers the intricate story of lives entangled by a series of murders. (Hat tip to Omnimystery.)
CBS has cast Chi McBride as one of the lead actors in the cop drama pilot, formerly known as Golden Boy, by Greg Berlanti. McBride will play Detective Owen, the new partner of a cop who is rising through the ranks of the police department to eventually becoming commissioner. Deadline announced this week that Ryan Phillippe has just signed to play the lead role.
Elliott Gould and Jon Voight have joined the cast for Showtime's pilot Ray Donovan, about a "fixer" who cleans up messes for an L.A. law firm.
James Purefoy has come onboard the still unnamed crime drama pilot for Fox that stars Kevin Bacon as a retired FBI profiler who finds himself caught up in a serial killer's diabolical scheme. Purefoy will play serial killer Joe Carroll, who uses technology to create a cult of fellow killers.
NCIS reached an important landmark: its 200th episode. Star Michael Weatherly took time to talk about his favorite episodes, guest stars and also hints about upcoming stories.
Having problems keeping track of the pilots for potential Fall 2012 series? The Hollywood Reporter has a handy up-to-date listing for you. There are plenty of crime dramas listed there, with ABC and FOX leading the way in terms of numbers. If you read through the descriptions, you'll see a lot of repetition, however.
NPR's "Morning Edition" spoke with British thriller writer Robert Harris about his new novel, The Fear Index, "the story of a hedge fund, a scientist and his computer run amok."
Authors John Forester, Erin Kelly and Lisa Gardner were guests on Suspense Radio this past week. Coming up on the 25th: Lisa Unger and Blake Crouch. If you can't listen live, all the shows are archived so you can listen when you can.
Although a mystery-themed play per se, the musical February House is receiving its world premiere production at Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven before moving into NYC for a spring run at the Public Theater. It's based on the true story of a house that was shared by poet W.H. Auden, novelist Carson McCullers, composer Benjamin Britten and striptease artist Gypsy Rose Lee, who is shown writing what would turn out to be the best-selling mystery novel The G-String Murders.