HBO Documentary Films has acquired the rights to the true-crime bestseller “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer,” by Michelle McNamara, and will develop a documentary series based on the book, it was announced today by Nancy Abraham and Lisa Heller, executive vice presidents, HBO Documentary Films.
“I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” is a meticulous exploration of the case of an elusive, violent predator who terrorized California in the late ’70s and early ’80s by journalist Michelle McNamara, who died tragically while investigating the unsolved crimes. Framed by an introduction by Gillian Flynn and afterword by McNamara’s husband, Patton Oswalt, the book was completed by McNamara’s lead researcher, Paul Haynes, and a close colleague, Billy Jenkins.
A chilling investigation of the mysterious serial killer and the wreckage he left behind, “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” is also a compelling self-portrait of the author that reveals her obsession with solving crimes, and her unflagging search for the truth and for justice for the victims and their families.
“HBO taking on this story will advance the passionate pursuit that Michelle shared with dozens of men and women in law enforcement? – ?to solve the mystery of one of California’s most notorious serial killers,” commented Oswalt.
Creator of the popular website TrueCrimeDiary.com, McNamara was determined to find the violent psychopath she dubbed “The Golden State Killer,” who committed 50 home-invasion sexual assaults in Northern California before moving south, where he perpetrated ten murders. Then he disappeared, eluding multiple police forces and some of the best detectives in the area. Obsessed with the case three decades later, McNamara pored over police reports, interviewed victims and embedded herself in the online communities that were as obsessed with the case as she was. “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” also explores her own past, including her years growing up in Oak Park, Ill. in a large family, and the reverberations of the unsolved murder that haunted her youth.
Published earlier this year, the book debuted at #1 on the New York Times combined print and e-book bestseller list. “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer” was hailed by the New York Times as “a vivid and meticulous investigation” and “a wrenching personal account from a writer who became consumed by her subject.”