Just a few days after news broke that fellow bestselling thriller author Ted Bell has sold the rights to his Alex Hawke franchise to Paramount, Deadline is now reporting that Nelson DeMille’s character, John Corey, is heading for the small screen.
One of best-selling author Nelson DeMille’s most popular protagonists, John Corey, is headed to the small screen. ABC has given a script commitment plus penalty to John Corey, a drama series project based on DeMille’s book series about the brash, quick-witted, and cocky NYPD homicide detective set in today’s social environment.
Written by Detroit 1-8-7 creator Jason Richman, John Corey hails from Sony TV, John Davis’ studio-based Davis Entertainment and veteran producer Mace Neufeld. It centers on John Corey as he returns to the force after being shot. He must come to terms with a department and a city that have changed in a post-Black Lives Matter/Blue Lives Matter world.
John Corey is executive produced by Richman, Davis Entertainment’s Davis and John Fox and Neufeld. David Caplan serves as co-executive producer.
The project can be traced to Sony and Neufeld going back almost 17 years. In January 2000, Columbia Pictures made seven-figure deals to buy the first two John Corey books that had been published to date, Plum Island and The Lion’s Game, with the idea to establish a potential new feature franchise character. Neufeld, who had produced the successful film adaptation of DeMille’s novel The General’s Daughter, was brought in to produce.
Fast forward to 2016 when Neufeld is executive producing a potential TV series adaptation of the John Corey collection, which has grown to 7 books.
This is the latest broadcast sale this season for Davis Entertainment, which has four series on the air. The list includes comedy Start Up, starring and directed by Zach Braff and written by Matt Tarses, which has a put pilot commitment at ABC; a David Shore/McG action drama at Fox loosely based on I Spy, also a put pilot; and comedies Twinsters at ABC, from Happy Ending screator David Caspe, and 29 at NBC with writer Brian Gallivan. Richman is repped by CAA. DeMille is with ICM Partners.
First off, I have to say that I’m thrilled this had been adapted for television and not a featured film. I think it would be hard to do DeMille’s writing and style justice in a two-hour format. being able to dedicate multiple episodes or even a full season, to each book is a better alternative.
For those who haven’t read the John Corey series, he first appeared in DeMille’s 1997 thriller, Plum Island. He’s appeared in six novels since then, including the author’s most recent novel, Radiant Angel (2015).
Honestly, I think it will be interesting to see how true the writers of the television show will stay to the character in the books. As the Deadline article mentioned, Corey is most definitely cocky and quick-witted. However, he’s also pretty politically incorrect.
In any event, book fans should celebrate. This is certainly exciting news, and we’ll be covering everything leading up to whenever the show premiers!