Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Criminal Splatterings!

 According to The Bookseller, publishers Century have acquired two thrillers by US author Neely Tucker.  The first set in Washington DC in the 1990s is based on the Princeton Place murders in DC in 1998.  The book is entitled The Ways of the Dead.  More information can be found here.

Congratulations go to Cathi Unsworth whose novel Weirdo has had the film rights snapped up.  More information can be found here.  Weirdo was published in July 2012 by Serpent’s Tail

Interesting news!  Swedish husband and wife duo better known as crime writer Lars Keppler have launched a literary agency.  According to The Bookseller, the venture will be headed up by Head of Zeus rights director Elisabeth Brännström.

Debut crime novelist Luke Delaney’s novel Cold Killing has been optioned as the basis of a multi-part TV drama.  More information can be found here.

According to Booktrade.info Bitter Lemon Press have acquired the rights to a literary crime novel set in Bangalore.  Cut Like Wound by Anita Nair will be published in May 2014 and will be the first in a series featuring Inspector Gowda.

For those of you missing Dan Stevens, the late, lamented heartthrob of the wildly popular Downton Abbey, he is slumming it these days, portraying a drug trafficker in a new film currently being shot in Brooklyn.  Stevens stars in the film, A Walk Among the Tombstones, with Liam Neeson, who portrays a private investigator Stevens' character hires to uncover who murdered and kidnapped his wife.  The film, which will be released next year and is being written and directed by Scott Frank, is based on a Matt Scudder crime novel by Lawrence Block.  Scott Frank is well versed in the crime genre having writing credit for Get Shorty, Out Of Sight and an episode of Karen Sisco.

Interesting article on the BBC website where writer and philosopher John Gray talks about Tom Ripley and the meaning of evil.  This was discussed on BBC Radio 4’s A Point of view.  The podcast can be heard here for a limited amount of time.

The BBC is to have a new season of drama and documentaries exploring the Cold War.  Staring off the season will be the film Legacy, which is based on the novel by Alan Judd and is set during the height of the Cold War in 1970s London.  More information can be found here.

Bill Nighy is set to reprise his roll as MI5 spy John Worricker in the second and third parts of the Worricker trilogy.  Unfortunately, the BBC have not yet said when it will be shown on BBC2.  However, more information can be found hereTurks & Caicos and Salting The Battlefield follow Page Eight, which was shown back in August 2011.

As a result of winning the Best Single Drama at the recent BAFTA awards for the drama, Murder the BBC have commissioned a series based on it.  More information can be read here.

In more drama news from the BBC, it has been announced that BBC3 have acquired Orphan Black a suspenseful thriller from BBC America.  In Orphan Black, Sarah Manning, an outsider and orphan finds her life changing dramatically after witnessing the suicide of a woman who looks exactly like her.  She assumes her identity, her boyfriend and her bank account.  A second series of Orphan Black has already been announced by BBC America.

ITV have also announced that there is to be a second series of the well received The Bletchley Circle.  Set a year later in 1954 the ladies are reunited for their second case in the first two-part story when former Bletchley Park colleague, Alice Merren is accused of murder.  More information can be read here.

Fans of Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple will be pleased to learn that filming has started on Endless Night. Once again, featuring Julia McKenzie playing Miss Marple, Endless Night is the third Agatha Christie Marple adaptation following A Caribbean Mystery and Greenshaw’s Folly to be commissioned by ITV.

Still on a Miss Marple roll, if you have not seen it yet then it is well worth seeing Murder, Marple and Me which got rave reviews whilst having its run at Edinburgh Fringe last year and has now transferred to London and is being shown at Ambassador Theatre for a very limited run. CWA Short Dagger Winner Stella Duffy directs murder, Marple and Me.  My review of the preview can be found hereMurder, Marple and Me will have a run at The Ambassador Theatre from 11 June 2013 until 19 June 2013.  Contact The Ambassador Theatre for tickets.

Brilliant Twitter fiction by Sabine Durrant in the Guardian!

Interesting interview with Mark Billingham can be found in the Independent.  His latest novel is The Dying Hours.  The Independent also have an interview with James Runcie whose second novel in the Grantchester mysteries Sidney Chambers and the Perils of the Night has just been published.  The series has already been optioned for television by ITV. A recent interview with James Runcie can also been found on the Shotsmag.co.uk website.

Russ Litten also talks about the day he saw his double in Prague.

According to the Daily Record, Ian Rankin has for the first time revealed the home address of his famous fictional detective John Rebus.  Rankin had previously revealed his most famous character lived in Arden Street in Marchmont, Edinburgh but this time he has gone further and actually named identified the flat number.

Over in The Daily Mail, Ian Rankin has named his top ten greatest literary crime novels.  The full list can be found here and includes such names as Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Brighton Rock by Graham Greene and The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler.  The Daily Mail also has a list of top ten criminal mastermind crime writers.  The list includes some well-known names such as Patricia Cornwell, Harlan Coben, Ian Rankin and Lee Child.  The rest of the list can be found here.

According to The Scotsman Ian Rankin is joining Mark Thomson, artistic director of Edinburgh's Royal Lyceum, in writing the stage play Dark Road, which will premiere at the theatre during its 2013-14 season.  The play explores the disturbing world of serial killers.  It will be Ian Rankin's first foray into the playwriting.

According to publishers Allen & Unwin, Norwegian bestselling author Anne Holt’s novels are being developing as a series.  BBC1 is due to start with her novel 1222, which sees Detective Hanna Wilhelmsen looking into the mysterious deaths of survivors from a train crash, which took place high in the Norwegian mountains.  In more Anne Holt news, Yellow Bird production company have bought the film rights to Anne Holt’s three crime novels What is mine, What never happens and Madam President. The books are centred on inspector Yngvar Stubø and Inger Johanne Vik – a psychologist and lawyer with a previous career in the FBI.  They cooperate to solve different kind of crimes, such as kidnappings, murders and terrorist conspiracies.  Yellow Bird is best known for such films as the original Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, the original Wallander series and Jo Nesbø’s Headhunters.

Yellow Bird are also according to Deadline.com producing a 10 part original series based on an idea by bestselling Norwegian crime novelist Jo Nesbø.  The political thriller will be entitled Occupied and is described as a political thriller set in a not so distant future where Russia has staged a "silk-glove" invasion of Norway to officially secure the oil import for the rest of the world. 

Deadline.com also reports that Stephen King's next thriller, Joyland, due to be published next month by Hard Case Crime, has been optioned for film, with Tate Taylor adapting the book and directing.  The project deals with a murder in a small-town North Carolina amusement park in 1973.

And, if you are not already fed up with all things Dan Brown and his latest novel Inferno, here is a quick set of links to various things a lá Dan Brown or Inferno.  Jake Kerridge review of Inferno for the Telegraph can be found here.  One of course cannot ignore the article by Michael Deacon imploring us not to make fun of Dan Brown.  James Legge reports that with the publication of Inferno Dan Brown’s publishers aim to have the biggest sales since the Harry Potter series.  Boyd Tonkin’s review of Inferno in the Independent can be found here.  A nice round up of a number of reviews can also be found here.  John Crace in the Guardian has reduced Inferno to an easily digestible 600 words!  And if you still haven’t got anything else to do and would like to test your knowledge of Dan Brown, you might want to take the quiz on all things Dan Brown!

John Dugdale has an interesting article in the Guardian where he writes about the fact that bestselling writers know that image counts when it comes to wanting to have a memorable character.  Rachel Cooke in the Guardian reviews the Murder Mile by Paul Collicutt, an illustrated detective novel where a murder takes place as the race to break the four-minute mile is happening.

According to the Guardian, Channel 4 have announced an eight part series which is set in a "crumbling Victorian cop shop on the wrong side of Manchester.  Entitled No Offence it promises to be a police procedural with a difference.

Fans of 24 will no doubt welcome the return of the series.  Fox Entertainment have announced the return of the thriller featuring Keifer Sutherland as Jack Bauer.  However, it will be as a different format.  Renamed 24: Live Another Day it will return in a new 12 part series.  More information can be found here.

According to Cinemablend, the producers of James Bond have approached James Nolan to direct the next Bond film.  It is not however, a forgone conclusion that he will accept.

According to the Hollywood Reporter LA based British filmmaker Trevor Miller is set to direct Mark Boone Jnr of Sons of Anarchy in a contemporary film noir, which is set around the story of a surveillance contractor who drifts through Los Angeles at night photographing "cheating couples" and their illicit sexual acts.  He finds himself involved in intrigue, murder and deception when he sees the husband of the woman that he has fallen in love with burying the body of a woman in the desert.

USA network have also announced a number of drama projects as well.  These include The Arrangement, which is based on a short story by Elmore Leonard. 

In Bank after an unconventional act of heroism, a young FBI agent decides to the surprise of many to work in the bank crimes division in Los Angeles.  It takes a special kind of person to confront such an unrelenting tide of crime, leaving her peers suspicious of her intent.

Shadow Counsel is a legal thriller centered on Ethan, a former Army JAG attorney who is now working as a criminal lawyer in NY and is recruited by the FBI to crack an on-going investigation.  Ethan serves as a shadow counsel that is a secret lawyer who operates behind the scenes and completely off the record to circumvent existing roadblocks (hired attorneys, interrogators, etc.) in classified cases.  He finds himself in trouble and on the run with no one to trust.

According to Deadline.com.  Paris-based Backup Media has teamed up with Memento Films International to finance Cold in July an adaptation of the Joe Lansdale cult novel.  Cold in July tells the story of Richard Dane, who wakes up during a home invasion and kills his intruder in self-defence.  As if that was not bad enough, the intruder’s father is a badass ex-con with plans to avenge his son’s death in the Old Testament way, by killing Dane’s own son.

According to The Hollywood Reporter Simon Beaufoy is set to adapt Len Deighton’s spy novels for television.  He is developing an 18-part series based on Deighton’s classic Cold War novels featuring spy Bernard Samson.

And in more news about book adaptations, according to TV Guide.com, TNT have ordered 10 episodes of the drama Legends, which is based on the novel by Robert Littell of the same name, is about an undercover agent named Martin Odum who works for the FBI's Deep Cover Operations division.  Martin can transform himself into a completely different person for each job, but starts to question his own identity when a stranger suggests that he is not the man he believes himself to be.  It will feature Sean Bean who can currently be seen in Games of Thrones.  The series will be shown in 2014.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Blair Underwood is set to star as Raymond Burr in the remake of Ironside.  It has been picked up by NBC.  The remake of the 1960s series stars Blair Underwood as a tough, sexy but acerbic police detective relegated to a wheelchair after a shooting who, hardly limited by his disability, he pushes and prods his handpicked team to solve the most difficult cases in the city.

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