Television

FremantleMedia expands into scripted content, partners bestselling author Heather Lende

MUMBAI: FremantleMedia is further expanding its push into scripted content by teaming up with bestselling author Heather Lende to develop Find The Good, an uplifting drama series inspired by Lende’s memoir of the same name and her earlier memoir, If You Lived Here, I’d Know Your Name.

FremantleMedia’s global drama director Sarah Doole and EVP - creative director, global drama Christian Vesper (Top Of The Lake and The Honourable Woman) have acquired the rights and will oversee the rollout of the adaptation.

 

The books will serve as the inspiration for a TV drama about Heather, a small-town Alaska obituary writer who investigates the lives of her recently deceased neighbours. Her hometown of Haines (pop. 2,400) is as beautiful as it is perilous, and as a result, residents are just as likely to die from natural causes as they are from an avalanche, small plane crash or boat sinking.

For Heather, each assignment begins a new investigation. Like a detective, she uncovers everything from past glory to family secrets, from intimate community connections to love, loss, and regret. Each journey not only informs how Heather navigates her own life - she is married with five children and six grandchildren - but also encourages us to understand our own.

“Find The Good offers an honest, clear-eyed, optimistic worldview that today’s audiences are yearning for,” Vesper said. “Heather’s books are packed with authentic characters living real lives in this gorgeous yet sometimes harsh environment. Her writing reinforces our need for deep human connection and we’re looking forward to adapting the stories into a drama that the whole family can enjoy. Life. Death. Humanity. Heather’s stories have all of the elements of a successful, feel-good, multi-generational and multi-cultural drama with universal appeal.”

“I’m excited to partner with Sarah, Christian, and a company like FremantleMedia,” author Lende said of the acquisition. “Some people may think that what I do is morbid, but compared to front-page news these days, obituaries are downright inspirational. I don’t write about death, I write about life—one person at a time, and I do it while living in community that is like a family. If I have learned anything, it is that what matters in the end are relationships. Did he do a little good? Was she kind? Was he brave? Will someone miss her? I think that matters, and mostly, the answer to those questions is yes.”

Brian Pines of Hypomania Content and Ellie Altshuler of Nixon Peabody LLP brokered the deal. Lende is represented by Elizabeth Wales of the Wales Literary Agency. Find The Good and If You Lived Here, I’d Know Your Name were originally published by Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, a division of Workman Publishing Co.

Heather Lende grew up on Long Island’s North Shore and attended private school and college before moving to Alaska 35 years ago. Lende has contributed to NPR, The Christian Science Monitor, The New York Times, The Washington Post, National Geographic Traveler, and others. She’s also a former contributing editor to Woman’s Day Magazine.

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