by: Donna Whitehead
We’re hearing that Scott Free Productions is putting together a movie based on HEARTSICK, the first novel in Chelsea Cain’s thriller series about fictional serial killer Gretchen Lowell. Allison Gillogly is producing.
Back in 2012, FX ordered a pilot script for a series based on Cain’s novels, with the adaptation to be penned by Mikko Alanne. The project never materialized, however. (NBC also optioned another of Cain’s novel’s “One Kick,” for a potential series that never developed.) Now, it seems that Scott Free is giving it another go on the big screen.
“Heartsick” follows Portland detective Archie Sheridan, who is currently on leave after being captured and tortured by the prolific serial killer Gretchen Lowell two years previously. He visits Lowell in prison every week, ostensibly in order to get her to reveal the locations of her victims’ bodies. When a new serial killer springs up in Portland, Sheridan returns to work in order to head up the investigating task force, tailed by a young reporter named Susan Ward. As the investigation progresses, however, Sheridan comes to realize that to solve the murders, he’ll need Lowell’s help.
The first novel in Cain’s series received positive reviews, but it was actually the second installment, “Sweetheart,” that got the most glowing accolades. Reviewers praised the characters’ complexity and psychological realism, as well as the novel’s tight pacing. Subsequent novels in the series include “Evil at Heart,” “The Night Season,” “Kill You Twice,” and “Let Me Go.”
Any movie that features a cat-and-mouse game with a serial killer will inevitably draw comparisons to “Silence of the Lambs,” but with Hannibal Lecter currently holding court on NBC, maybe he can give up some room on the big screen. It would certainly be interesting to see who would be cast as Gretchen Lowell.