Lee Child’s ‘Ten Keys’ Series Adaptation In The Works As Legendary & Veritas Entertainment Ink First-Look TV Deal

EXCLUSIVE: Legendary Entertainment and Veritas Entertainment have struck a first-look television deal and set their first project together – an adaptation of a Lee Childs story.

Legendary, which is behind series such as Amazon’s Carnival Row, HBO Max’s upcoming Dune: The Sisterhood and Monsterverse live-action series for Apple TV+, and Veritas, which is behind Apple’s The Mosquito Coast, Netflix’s Vikings: Valhalla and MGM+’s A Spy Among Friends, have set a multi-year deal to acquire, develop, and build large scale television series based on established IP.

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Under the deal, Legendary has the first right to develop TV projects based on all new Veritas Entertainment intellectual property for two years.

The first project is an adaptation of Lee Child’s short story Ten Keys, which comes from his The Cocaine Chronicles anthology. It tells the story of the most dangerous cartel in Mexico that sends their mysterious enforcer only known by his alias, Octavian, to hunt down those who have stolen from them. When Octavian decides to kill his latest target and to steal ten kilos of cocaine from the Cartel, he goes from being the hunter to being hunted for the first time in his life.

British author Childs began his career in television in the UK at ITV’s Granada Television working on series such as Prime Suspect and Cracker before moving into writing. It is the latest adaptation of his work following a number of Jack Reacher projects including the 2012 film and its 2016 sequel as well as Amazon series Reacher.

Veritas’ Alan Gasmer and Peter Jaysen will executive produce all projects under the pact with Andy Cutler serving as a producer for Veritas Entertainment.

It comes as Legendary Entertainment is also ramping up its television activities with projects like the anime series Skull Island and Tomb Raider, both for Netflix and international drama series Drops of God, which was picked up by Apple, as well as global productions such as Portuguese crime heist Vanda, and Spanish thriller You Would Do It Too.

Veritas Entertainment specializes in the adaptation of books, magazine articles, and life rights. Almost all their scripted projects in development are based on existing IP such as Starz/BBC series The Dublin Murders and upcoming feature projects A Horse Walks in a Bar with Village Roadshow and A Complete Unknown for Searchlight Pictures.

“Alan and Peter have developed a unique ability to find, nurture, and develop great books into extraordinary television. This is a tremendous opportunity to couple their creative and resourceful producing experience with Legendary’s brand equity, financial resources, and expertise assembling undeniable television packages,” said Carmi Zlotnik, President of Television, Legendary Entertainment. “We could not be happier to begin this partnership with the development of Lee Child’s incredibly intriguing and dramatic Ten Keys.”

“Legendary is the ideal studio partner for Veritas Entertainment. We are both laser-focused–sourcing premium IP, developing with the best-in-class, and producing impactful television. The opportunity to combine our experience and relationships with their talented team was an easy decision for us. Legendary is the first studio that we have ever entered a deal with, and it was important to us that we align our brand with longtime trusted partners who share our creative vision,” added Alan Gasmer and Peter Jaysen.

Lee Child is repped by APA, Darley Anderson Literary, TV and Film Agency and Lichter Grossman Nichols Alder Feldman & Clark. Veritas’ deal was negotiated by Jeffrey B. Freid of Longarzo Vance Klevan Freid LLP.

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