[04/14/08 - 07:47 AM]
Patricia Cornwell, the #1 International Bestselling Author, and Lifetime Make Television History with First-Ever Adaptation of Two of Cornwell's Acclaimed Crime Novels
Her #1 New York Times bestseller, "At Risk," and its sequel, "The Front," to be published by G. P. Putnam's Sons in May, have been optioned by the Network.

[via press release from Lifetime]



LOS ANGELES, CA � In a ground-breaking agreement, Lifetime Television will become the first network ever to adapt acclaimed international author Patricia Cornwell's novels for television. Her #1 New York Times bestseller, At Risk, and its sequel, The Front, to be published by G. P. Putnam's Sons in May, have been optioned by the Network.

In making the announcement, Tanya Lopez, Senior Vice President, Original Movies, said: "As we continuously re-invent our popular Lifetime Original Movies, we're expanding the genres and including more works by America's leading women writers. Patricia Cornwell is in a class by herself and we are honored she has chosen Lifetime as the vehicle to bring these two brilliant novels to television."

Patricia Cornwell said: "I am excited and honored by this new creative partnership with such an outstanding network, and believe that together we can bring to life stories and characters unique to the crime writing genre."

Stanley M. Brooks and Jim Head of Once Upon a Time Films (LMN's "The Capture of the Green River Killer" -- Lifetime Movie Network's highest-rated movie in its 10-year history; Emmy� Award-winning "Broken Trail"), Russell Werdin and Lane Bishop of Twinstar Entertainment and Patricia Cornwell will serve as executive producers.

Other bestsellers that have been adapted to Lifetime Original Movies include Joyce Carol Oates' "We Were the Mulvaneys," Sue Monk Kidd's "The Mermaid Chair," and a quartet of Nora Roberts' novels. Recent movies include Kim Edwards' "The Memory Keeper's Daughter," starring Dermot Mulroney, Emily Watson and Gretchen Mol and Jodi Picoult's "The Tenth Circle" starring Kelly Preston and Ron Eldard, premiering Saturday, June 28 (9PM ET/PT) on Lifetime.

At Risk features Cornwell's quicksilver, cut-to-the-bone style and extraordinary cast of characters and has been met with wide critical acclaim. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch said, "At Risk is Cornwell's finest novel. It works in every way possible � fascinating characters, solid plot, great pacing and expertly crafted prose." Added The Denver Post, "Absolutely the best. Here's hoping we'll see more of Win, Monique, Nana and Sykes in the coming years. They are the best characters to emerge from Cornwell's creative pen since . . . well, Kay Scarpetta."

At Risk centers on Massachusetts state investigator Win Garano, a shrewd man of mixed-race background and a not inconsiderable chip on his shoulder, D.A. Monique Lamont, a hard-charging woman with powerful ambitions and a troubling willingness to cut corners, and Garano's grandmother, who has certain unpredictable talents that are not to be ignored.

At Risk was originally published in January 2006 as a 15-week serialization in the New York Times Sunday Magazine. When it was published by G.P. Putnam's Sons in May 2006, it became an instant #1 New York Times bestseller. The Front is set to be released by Putnam next month on May 20th.

Patricia Cornwell's first crime novel, Postmortem, was published by Scribner's in 1990. Initially rejected by seven major publishing houses, it became the first novel to win the Edgar, Creasey, Anthony, and Macavity Awards as well as the French Prix du Roman d'Aventure in a single year. In Postmortem, Cornwell introduced Dr. Kay Scarpetta as the intrepid Chief Medical Examiner of the Commonwealth of Virginia. In 1994, Cornwell won the coveted British Gold Dagger for best crime novel, Cruel and Unusual, and in 1999, Dr. Scarpetta herself won the Sherlock Award for best detective created by an American author. In 2008, Cornwell became the first American writer to win the Galaxy British Book Awards crime thriller of the year for Book of the Dead.

Following the success of her first novel, Cornwell has written a string of bestsellers featuring Kay Scarpetta, her detective sidekick Marino, and her volatile niece, Lucy: Body of Evidence (1991), All That Remains (1992), Cruel and Unusual (1993), The Body Farm (1994), From Potter's Field (1995), Cause of Death (1996), Unnatural Exposure (1997), Point of Origin (1998), Black Notice (1999), The Last Precinct (2000), Blow Fly (2003), Trace (2004), and Predator (2005).

In addition to the Scarpetta novels, she has written three bestselling novels featuring the character of Andy Brazil, a volunteer police officer: Hornet's Nest (1996), Southern Cross (1998), and Isle of Dogs (2001); two cookbooks: Scarpetta's Winter Table (1998) and Food to Die For (2001) and the children's book: Life's Little Fable (1999). In 1997, she updated A Time for Remembering, her award-winning biography of Ruth Graham that was first published in 1983 and was reissued with the title Ruth, A Portrait: The Story of Ruth Bell Graham.

Intrigued by Scotland Yard's John Grieve's observation that no one had ever tried to use modern forensic evidence to solve the murders committed by Jack the Ripper, Cornwell began her own investigation of the serial killer's crimes, which resulted in her #1 New York Times bestselling nonfiction book, Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper � Case Closed (2002), where she chronicled her investigation and discovery of compelling evidence to indict the famous artist Walter Sickert as the Ripper.

ICM negotiated the deal on behalf of Cornwell.

LIFETIME is the leader in women's television and one of the top-rated basic cable television networks. A diverse, multi-media company, LIFETIME is committed to offering the highest quality entertainment and information programming, and advocating a wide range of issues affecting women and their families. LIFETIME Television, Lifetime Movie Network, Lifetime Real Women and Lifetime Digital (including myLifetime.com) are part of LIFETIME Entertainment Services, a 50/50 joint venture of Hearst Corporation and The Walt Disney Company.

  [april 2008]  


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