As a rabid fan of “Damages,” this news makes me giddy. It might even take some of the sting out of “The Killing” cancellation, which seems permanent and not likely to be resurrected on Netflix, as I once surmised.
Netflix has ordered a new psychological thriller series from “Damages” creators Todd A. Kessler, Daniel Zelman and Glenn Kessler that centers on a family of adult siblings whose secrets and scars are revealed when their black sheep brother returns home. The 13-episode first season, from Sony Pictures Television, will premiere exclusively for Netflix members to watch instantly in all Netflix territories.
“We were spellbound after hearing Todd, Glenn and Daniel’s pitch, and knew Netflix was the perfect home for this suspenseful family drama that is going to have viewers on the edge of their seats,” said Cindy Holland, vp of original content for Netflix. “Their work on ‘Damages’ was truly ahead of its time and we’re proud to be bringing our viewers this upcoming series.”
In a statement, Zelman and the Kessler brothers said, “We are absolutely thrilled to be creating an original series for Netflix – a company committed to cutting-edge storytelling in a vibrant, new space. We’re equally excited about our relationship with Sony Pictures TV, which continues to provide us with unwavering creative support.
“We’ve always wanted to put our spin on a family saga and examine universal themes of family in a way that has never been seen before on television. The series is a tightly wound thriller that explores the complex bonds between parents and children, brothers and sisters, and the rivalries, jealousies, and betrayals at the core of every family.”
“The guys worked so hard to come up with the right idea after the success of ‘Damages,'” said Jamie Erlicht, president of programming and production for Sony Pictures Television. “It took almost a year to fully develop the pitch and their patience paid off with the incredible reaction in the community, especially at Netflix, the perfect home for this show.”
Set to begin production in early 2014, the series explores the wounds and emotional demons that lie at the core of a contemporary American family. Kessler, Zelman and Kessler will serve as executive producers of the one-hour drama that will be produced by Sony Pictures Television for Netflix.
Together, the Emmy and Golden Globe nominated Writers/Executive Producers Todd A. Kessler, Daniel Zelman, and Glenn Kessler co-created the award winning legal thriller “Damages.” Todd A. Kessler also wrote and produced the second and third seasons of HBO’s “The Sopranos”; Michael Mann’s “Robbery Homicide Division,” and the first season of NBC’s “Providence.” Kessler began his career as a playwright working with David Rabe, and segued into film and television when Spike Lee hired him as a screenwriter.
Kessler graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard University with a degree in Dramatic Literature and Playwriting, and has twice been a Visiting Artist at Harvard, teaching screenwriting seminars. He has been nominated for seven Emmys and three Golden Globe Awards, as well as a Writers Guild of America Award and a Producers Guild Award. Daniel Zelman has co-authored seven screenplays. Zelman’s first collaboration with the Kesslers was on “The Inside,” a series the brothers created for FOX. Before turning to writing, Zelman received his master of fine arts degree from New York University’s Tisch School of Arts Graduate Acting Program.
Zelman went on to appear as an actor in film, television and on-stage in New York, where he acted in many Off- Broadway Plays and on Broadway in Tony Kushner’s “Angels in America.” Zelman has been nominated for three Emmy Awards, a Golden Globe award, a Writers Guild of America Award and a Producers Guild Award. Glenn Kessler began his career as a playwright and an actor in film, television, and on stage. He segued into television writing working on Michael Mann’s CBS drama “Robbery Homicide Division.”
Since then, Kessler has created dramas for 20th Century Fox, Universal, USA, and Imagine Television. Kessler holds a Master in Fine Arts from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts Graduate Acting Program. He graduated with honors from Harvard University where he earned a degree in English and American Literature. Kessler has been nominated for three Emmy Awards, a Golden Globe award as well as a Writers Guild of America Award and a Producers Guild Award.
Seems like a slam dunk, doesn’t it?