AceShowbiz - Antonio Banderas is picking up a pad and pen to play an Italian crime reporter investigating the murders of a real-life serial killer.
The Oscar winner will star in the six-hour limited series "The Monster of Florence", which will chronicle the work of American fiction writer Douglas Preston and journalist Mario Spezi, who examined the police investigation into the deaths of 14 people between 1974 and 1985, and uncovered procedural mistakes.
At one point, Spezi himself was considered a suspect in the slayings, which targeted young couples enjoying romantic outings in the countryside.
The story will be adapted from Preston and Spezi's own 2006 book on the case, "The Monster Of Florence: A True Story".
Preston himself said that both the book and the series "tell the true story of our search for - and identification of - the killer and our frightening interview with him." He added, "In a bizarre turn, Mario and I were sucked into a harrowing prosecutorial vendetta, our phones tapped, followed and menaced by the police, accused of participating in Satanic rites -- which culminated in Mario arrested and charged with being the Monster of Florence himself."
"A Royal Affair" director Nikolaj Arcel will take charge of the Studiocanal project from a script he developed with "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" co-writer Anders Thomas Jensen, according to Variety. It will be filmed on location in Florence, Sardinia and Tuscany.
About the limited series, Ron Halpern, Studiocanal executive VP of global production, said, "The book is an absolute page turner; powerful, compelling, dangerous, and personal. You simply can't believe this all happened to them. We can't wait to begin production on the series in Florence and to be able to work with one of our favorite actors Antonio Banderas."
Banderas will serve as an executive producer on the show, his first TV gig since portraying artist Pablo Picasso in 2018's "Genius".