Peacock has ordered the coming-of-age thriller “Hysteria!” straight-to-series, it announced Friday. The series explores Americans’ dark history of mass hysteria through a shocking story set within the Satanic Panic.
The logline reads: “When a beloved varsity quarterback disappears during the ‘Satanic Panic’ of the late 1980s, a struggling high school heavy metal band of outcasts realize they can capitalize on the town’s sudden interest in the occult by building a reputation as a Satanic metal band, until a bizarre series of murders, kidnappings, and reported “supernatural activity” triggers a leather-studded witch hunt that leads directly back to them.”
“Our upcoming thriller series Hysteria! will explore the complex world of the Satanic Panic, set amidst ‘80s nostalgia, mystery, heavy metal, and an all-American setting,” said Lisa Katz, President Scripted Content, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming. “We’re excited to partner on this fresh, coming-of-age story led by writer Matthew Scott Kane, executive producers and directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, Good Fear, and our partners at UCP, for what is sure to be a compelling original series for Peacock viewers.”
“This nail-biting thriller dives into a mass moral panic and all the fears, desires, anger and dread that led to these dark days,” said Beatrice Springborn, President, UCP. “Matthew’s script is original, intriguing and perfectly captures the frenetic energy of the Satanic Panic. We can’t wait for audiences to experience the show on Peacock.”
Good Fear developed the spec pilot and series pitch with Kane and then attached Goldstein and Daley, the filmmakers behind Paramount’s upcoming action-comedy “Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves,” to direct and produce with them. Bender and Weiner have a long relationship with the filmmaking duo. They felt the strong voice in the material and original concept were well-suited for their talents.
The series will be produced by UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group. Kane serves as writer and executive producer, Daley and Goldstein will direct and EP, and Bender and Weiner will EP for Good Fear.