“Luther” creator Neil Cross will pen an adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s novel “The Talented Mr. Ripley,” a 1955 psychological thriller. Variety reports that Cross will work with Endemol Shine Studios, Entertainment 360 and Diogenes in order to adapt the novel to television.
Last year, Highsmith struck a deal with Endemol Shine Studios, Entertainment 360 and Diogenes to develop the five Ripley novels as a television series; in addition to “Talented,” her other Ripley novels include “Ripley Underground (1970), “Ripley’s Game” (1974), “The Boy Who Followed Ripley” (1980) and “Ripley Under Water” (1991). The first novel was also made into a film starring Matt Damon, Jude Law and Gwenyth Paltrow in 1999.
The novel follows a con artist named Tom Ripley, who travels to Italy when he’s hired by shipping magnate to convince his son Dickie to return to the United States. Instead, Ripley befriends Dickie and later kills him, so that he can assume his identity and gain control of his trust fund. Ripley ends up playing a cat-and-mouse game with the Italian police over his stolen identity.
Guymon Casady, Ben Forkner and Philipp Keel will executive produce the series. Endemol Shine hopes to launch the show in the US as well as other key territories.