EXCLUSIVE: BBC Studios is working with U.S. outfits Nice Media Studios and Windowseat Pictures to develop CJ Tudor’s novel The Chalk Man into a six-part TV series.
BBC Studios has attached The Boy With The Top Knot and Single Father writer Mick Ford to adapt the Sunday Times bestseller. The project is housed with BBC Studios’ drama team in the north of England, which is currently making Sean Bean and Stephen Graham series Time.
The Chalk Man tells the story of five 1990s school students who, inspired by a teacher, start leaving each other secret messages in chalk. But the fun is halted when the chalk drawings lead them to the dead body of a 17-year-old girl. Fast forward 30 years and one of the boys, Eddie, receives a stick of chalk and drawing in the post, forcing the chalk men to face their haunting memories all over again.
“CJ Tudor’s chilling tale of an adulthood haunted by the past, is a story we knew TV viewers around the world would be gripped by,” said Tom Sherry, head of BBC Studios drama north. Nice Media chairman Sam Sokolow added: “Mick Ford’s authentic voice and dynamic vision serve the material great justice.”
TV rights to Penguin Random House/Michael Joseph’s The Chalk Man are jointly owned by BBC Studios, Nice Media, and Windowseat. Executives producers are Sherry and Priscilla Parish for BBC Studios; Sam Sokolow for Nice Media and Bill Kiely for Windowseat.
Nice Media’s other projects include Nat Geo’s Genius: Aretha, starring Cynthia Erivo as Aretha Franklin, while it is also working with MGM Television to develop TC Boyle’s immigration novel The Tortilla Curtain with Will Schefer and Mark Olsen creating and showrunning.
Windowseat’s credits include James Franco and Amber Heard feature The Adderall Diaries and Barely Lethal, which starred Jessica Alba and Samuel L. Jackson.