I. Marlene King is adapting Finlay Donovan Is Killing It for television. This writer, producer and director is best known as the executive producer and showrunner of teen drama series Pretty Little Liars and for writing Now and Then, a film from 1995. Finlay Donovan Is Killing It: A Mystery is a book by award-winning author Elle Cosimano. Published on Feb. 2, 2021, it tells the story of a suspense novelist and single mother, Finlay Donovan, who becomes involved in real-life murder investigations.
According to the book description, this character also faces struggles such as not having the new book she promised her agent written and sending her daughter to school with duct tape in her hair after an incident with scissors. When Finlay is mistaken for a contract killer, she ends up accepting an offer to get rid of a problem husband, all in order to make ends meet. Fast-paced and witty, this is the first part of a new mystery series from Cosimano.
On Jan. 29, 2021, I. Marlene King turned to Twitter to share the news, saying she was honored and excited. "Finlay Donovan Is Killing It is one of the most fun and twisty books I've ever read. I promise, you're going to fall in love [with] Finlay, just like I did." In addition to her tweet was a Publishers Marketplace Deal Report from Jan. 27, 2021, which stated the show was optioned to 20th Television Studios, and Cosimano's own tweet that stated she knew King "was the perfect producer" for this adaptation.
Previously, King developed Pretty Little Liars, which was based on a novel series of the same name by Sara Shepard. It was on the air between 2010 and 2017, and it was full of drama, mystery and thrills; the plot centered around a group of friends receiving anonymous and ominous messages from someone called "A".
Pretty Little Liars led to two spin-off series, both created by King: Ravenswood in 2013, followed by Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists in 2019. On Rotten Tomatoes, it was said that Ravenswood "legitimately elicits chills and surprises with an attractive young cast", and Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists was nominated for two Teen Choice Awards and won Best TV Show from BreakTudo Awards. Despite those facts, both of these TV shows were canceled after one season.
Another notable and suspenseful story from King is Now and Then, which starred Christina Ricci, Rosie O'Donnell, Thora Birch, Melanie Griffith, Gaby Hoffmann, Demi Moore, Ashleigh Aston Moore and Rita Wilson. It was all about four women reminiscing on an eventful summer they spent together. In 2012, news broke that ABC Family and King would be developing a television adaptation of the movie, but it did not make it past the developmental stage.
Obviously, King knows how to do the mystery genre, and she has already had great success with turning books into exciting shows. Plus, based on what has already been said about Finlay Donovan Is Killing It: A Mystery, it sounds like it would make for one fascinating television series. That being said, stay tuned for more updates, as this writer, producer and director adapts Cosimano's tale.