We've Got Hollywood Covered

Netflix Adapting Harlan Coben’s ‘Fool Me Once’ With Star Michelle Keegan

Richard Armitage and Joanna Lumley are also set for the limited thriller series

Author Harlan Coben is back at Netflix with his fifth novel adaptation, as the streamer takes on “Fool Me Once” with a limited thriller series starring Michelle Keegan, Richard Armitage and Joanna Lumley.

The New York Times bestselling writer re-upped his deal with Netflix in October, with the multimillion dollar pact giving the streamer access to his more than two dozen titles. Longtime collaborators Danny Brocklehurst, Nicola Shindler and Richard Fee will executive produce along with Coben.

“Fool Me Once” follows Maya Stern (Keegan), a woman who is trying to come to terms with the brutal murder of her husband Joe (Armitage). But when Maya installs a nanny-cam to keep an eye on her young daughter, she is shocked to see a man she recognizes in her house — her husband.

Detective Sergeant Sami Kierce (Adeel Akhtar) is leading the homicide investigation into Joe’s death while grappling with secrets of his own. Meanwhile, Maya’s niece and nephew, Abby and Daniel, are trying to find the truth about their mother’s murder, several months earlier, and uncovering the possible connections between both cases. Judith Burkett, Joe’s overprotective mother, is portrayed by Lumley. Also part of the cast are Emmett J. Scanlan, Dino Fetscher, Marcus Garvey, Hattie Morahan, James Northcote, Dänya Griver, Daniel Burt, Adelle Leonce, Natalia Kostrzewa and Laura Gibbons.

In keeping with previous Coben adaptations, “Fool Me Once” will relocate the story from the U.S. to the UK. Filming is already underway on the eight hourlong episodes in Manchester and the Northwest of England.

Coben created the series, with Brocklehurst serving as head writer, alongside writers Charlotte Coben, Yemi Oyefuwa, Nina Metivier and Tom Farrelly. The Quay Street Productions project will be directed by David Moore and Nimer Rashed. Jessica Taylor of Happy Valley serves as producer.

“I’m thrilled and honoured to once again be collaborating with my uber-talented partners Danny, Nicola and Richard,” Coben said. “‘Fool Me Once’ will be our fourth Netflix series (following ‘Safe,’ ‘The Stranger’ and ‘Stay Close’) together, and man, it never gets old! ‘Fool Me Once’ is a pulse-pounder — a shocking story of how secrets and deceit have the power to bring people together while simultaneously tearing them apart. I can’t wait to see how this dream cast brings these characters to life.”

Brocklehurst added, “Following on from our smash hits ‘The Stranger’ and ‘Stay Close,’ ‘Fool Me Once’ does not disappoint. Harlan’s books are storytelling genius and it’s great to be entrusted once more in bringing his gripping stories of life. As always with our thrillers, expect twist upon twist and an emotional roller-coaster. Plus, the cast is phenomenal — audiences are in for a treat!”

Schindler and Fee, who serve as EPs for the Quay Street banner, said in a statement: “Harlan is a master of twists and turns that are impossible to predict, which is what makes adapting his books for television impossible to resist! ‘Fool Me Once’ is no different, we’re incredibly excited to bring the story to life with an all-star cast.”

The Netflix project will mark Coben’s eighth on-screen adaptation. The author continues his work with local screenwriters from around the world to bring his novels to life on screen, so far across four languages.

“Fool Me Once” was previously in adaptation as a film starring Julia Roberts as Maya, backed by her banner Red Om Films, eOne and Tooley Productions.