Peacock announced the straight-to-series order of true crime drama A FRIEND OF THE FAMILY from Nick Antosca (The Act, Channel Zero), who will serve as showrunner, writer and executive producer. Antosca, under his production banner Eat the Cat, will produce via his overall deal with UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group.
Peacock also announced series stars Anna Paquin (Flack, The Irishman and True Blood), Jake Lacy (The White Lotus, Being the Ricardos), Colin Hanks (The Offer, Impeachment: American Crime Story) and Lio Tipton (The Edge of Sleep, Why Women Kill).
The limited series comes from UCP and will be based on Jan Broberg’s stranger-than-fiction kidnapping story.
Acclaimed director Eliza Hittman (Never Rarely Sometimes Always) is set to direct and executive produce multiple episodes, including the first episode (101).
Jan Broberg and Mary Ann Broberg will also serve as producers.
A FRIEND OF THE FAMILY is based on the harrowing true story of the Broberg family, whose daughter Jan was kidnapped multiple times over a period of years by a charismatic, obsessed family “friend.” The Brobergs — devoted to their faith, family, and community — were utterly unprepared for the sophisticated tactics their neighbor used to exploit their vulnerabilities, drive them apart, and turn their daughter against them. This is the story of how their lives were permanently altered — and how they survived.
“Nick Antosca has created a compelling series in A Friend of the Family that explores one family’s unimaginable experience with great insight and sensitivity,” said Lisa Katz, president scripted content, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming. “We can’t wait to see Anna Paquin, Jake Lacy, Colin Hanks, and Lio Tipton bring these complex characters to life, and we know Peacock audiences will connect with this incredible story of deception and resilience.”
“Alongside Jan and Mary Ann Broberg, Nick and Alex have brought humanity to a delicate and haunting story,” said Beatrice Springborn, President, UCP. “As he demonstrated with ‘The Act,’ and now with this series, Nick treats real people not as caricatures but as complex and layered. We’re proud to bring that quality and care in storytelling to Peacock.”
ANNA PAQUIN (Flack, The Irishman, True Blood) will play the role of Mary Ann Broberg. Mary Ann is the mother of three daughters, and her life has felt safe, happy and rewarding until recently. She has realized too late that she may have missed warning signs and made a terrible mistake by becoming close to her charismatic neighbor Robert Berchtold — and trusting him around her oldest daughter, Jan.
JAKE LACY (The White Lotus, Being the Ricardos) will play the role of Robert “B” Berchtold, a charming local businessman who appears to be a genial Mormon father and husband. An expert in manipulation, he puts everyone around him at ease as he carefully plots the abduction of Mary Ann’s daughter.
COLIN HANKS (The Offer, Impeachment: American Crime Story) will play the role of Bob Broberg, Mary Ann’s husband and Jan’s father, Bob is big-hearted, kind, and everyone’s best friend, the very model of a suburban patriarch. As his family gets closer to neighbor Robert Berchtold, Bob begins to fear that something is amiss.
LIO TIPTON (The Edge of Sleep, Why Women Kill) will play the role of Gail Berchtold. Gail is Robert Berchtold’s wife and the mother of a large family. Her husband suffers from mood swings and this has led him to act erratically. Gail’s concerns about her husband may keep her on edge, but she never could have expected what her husband would eventually do.
ABOUT THE SERIES:
- Showrunner / Executive Producer / Writer: Nick Antosca
- Executive Producer: Alex Hedlund
- Executive Producer / Director (multiple episodes, including 101): Eliza Hittman
- Producers: Jan Broberg, Mary Ann Broberg
- Consulting Producer: Skye Borgman for Top Knot Films
- Produced by: UCP, a division of Universal Studio Group
- Format: True crime limited drama series
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