Apple continues its push into the original programming arena, giving a limited series order for the eight-episode drama Defending Jacob from lead and executive producer Chris Evans (Captain America, The Avengers). Created and written by showrunner Mark Bomback (Planet of the Apes, The Wolverine), the series is based on William Landay's bestselling 2012 novel about a father dealing with the accusation that his son is a 14-year-old murderer. Oscar-nominated Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game, Jack Ryan) is attached to direct and executive produce the series.
Originally published in January 2012 by Random House, here's an overview of Landay's novel:
Andy Barber has been an assistant district attorney for two decades. He is respected. Admired in the courtroom. Happy at home with the loves of his life: his wife, Laurie, and their teenage son, Jacob.
Then Andy's quiet suburb is stunned by a shocking crime: a young boy stabbed to death in a leafy park. And an even greater shock: The accused is Andy's own son—shy, awkward, mysterious Jacob.
Andy believes in Jacob's innocence. Any parent would. But the pressure mounts. Damning evidence. Doubt. A faltering marriage. The neighbors' contempt. A murder trial that threatens to obliterate Andy's family.
It is the ultimate test for any parent: How far would you go to protect your child? It is a test of devotion. A test of how well a parent can know a child. For Andy Barber, a man with an iron will and a dark secret, it is a test of guilt and innocence in the deepest sense.
How far would you go?
Defending Jacob comes from Paramount Television and Anonymous Content. Bomback, Evans, and Tyldum will executive produce alongside Anonymous Content's Rosalie Swedlin and Adam Shulman.
Evans will be making his final turn as Captain America in the upcoming fourth Avengers film, and is about to begin theater production on The Devil All the Time. Tyldum serves as executive producer on Amazon's Jack Ryan and Starz's Counterpart, directing the pilot episodes of both series.