EXCLUSIVE: Cush Jumbo (The Good Fight), James Nesbitt (The Missing), Richard Armitage (The Stranger) and Sarah Parish (Bancroft) have been set as cast in the series adaptation of Harlan Coben’s New York Times bestselling novel Stay Close at Netflix.
Nicola Shindler is exec producing the project for Studiocanal-owned Red Production Company, alongside Coben, Danny Brocklehurst and Richard Fee. Creator Coben is penning the eight-episode show alongside lead writer Brocklehurst and Fee. Juliet Charlesworth (Happy Valley) is series producer and Daniel O’Hara (The Stranger) is lead director and an exec producer.
In keeping with previous Coben adaptations at Netflix, Stay Close will be relocated from the U.S. to the UK. The story follows three people living comfortable lives who each conceal dark secrets that even the closest to them would never suspect; Megan (Jumbo), a working mother of three; Ray (Armitage), the once promising documentary photographer, now stuck in a dead-end job pandering to celebrity obsessed rich kids, and Broome (Nesbitt), a detective who’s unable to let go of a missing person’s cold case. Lorraine (Parish), an old friend from Megan’s past, delivers some shocking news which will impact on all three characters. As the past comes back to haunt them, threatening to ruin their lives and the lives of those around them, what will be their next move?
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Deadline first revealed that Netflix and Red were teaming once again on a Harlan Coben adaptation, this time his 2012 mystery thriller Stay Close. The project is the latest in Coben’s five-year, 14-book mega deal with the streamer, following 2020’s The Stranger and Polish original The Woods, 2018’s Safe, and 2016’s The Five.
Upcoming under the pact are Spanish-language The Innocent starring Mario Casas and directed by Oriol Paulo, the film Six Years, written and directed by David Ayer, and French-language thriller Gone For Good, created and written by David Elkaïm and Vincent Poymiro in collaboration with Pauline Guena, Nacim Mehtar and Marion Festraëts.
Cush Jumbo said, “I’m so excited to work alongside Netflix, Nicola and the whole team on Stay Close. Can’t wait to get my teeth into such a brilliant British thriller.”
“The team at Red are a northern powerhouse of world-class TV. They are a benchmark for quality drama, and I’m thrilled to be part of such a great production. The scripts drew me in from the get-go and I am looking forward to starting filming,” James Nesbitt added.
“I can’t wait to return to Manchester to work with Nicola, Danny, Harlan and the team again. I love Harlan’s style and this plot and character will be brilliantly challenging. At a time when we have remained apart; Stay Close promises to break all the rules,” said Richard Armitage.
Harlan Coben added, “I am so happy and excited to Stay Close (pun intended) with Danny Brocklehurst, Nicola Shindler and Richard Fee — the same team that made The Stranger, Safe and The Five. And talk about a dream-come-true cast – Cush Jumbo, an incendiary and awesome talent; Jimmy Nesbitt, a legendary actor I always wanted to collaborate with; and wow, Richard Armitage back again! Netflix has been a wonderful home, and from what I’ve seen so far, Stay Close will be our most gripping and binge-able series yet.”
Nicola Shindler said, “Working with Harlan, Danny and Richard for the fourth collaboration is a joy as we push each other for more bingeable ideas and twists. Harlan’s books and stories are a pleasure to bring to the screen. And we are delighted to have Cush, Jimmy and Richard to bring the characters to life.”
Sarah Doole was recently appointed CEO of Red. Nicola Shindler is departing the company she founded to launch a scripted label within ITV Studios in 2021.