Scarlett Johansson ("Avengers" franchise, Asteroid City) is set to lead & executive produce a thriller limited series adaptation of John Katzenbach's 1992 bestselling novel Just Cause. Stemming from writer Christy Hall (I'm Not OK With This, Daddio), Johansson's These Pictures & Warner Bros. TV, the project landed a straight-to-series order at Amazon Studios for Amazon's Prime Video in what Deadline Hollywood is describing in its exclusive reporting as a "very competitive situation." In a change from the novel, the male protagonist, Miami newspaper editorial writer Matt Cowart will now be portrayed by Johansson with the name Madison "Madi" Cowart, a struggling reporter for a Florida newspaper sent to cover the final days of an inmate on death row.
Based on the official overview of the novel, burnt-out Miami reporter Matt Cowart receives a letter from a death row inmate pleading his innocence, but he is tempted to dismiss it. But as the newspaperman digs into the case of Robert Earl Ferguson, an African American given the death penalty for the brutal slaying of a white girl, he begins to believe that Ferguson is the real victim of hate and prejudice. And if he doesn't act, the wrong man is going to be executed. In the months that follow, Cowart's investigative articles not only set Ferguson free but make Cowart a celebrity and win him a Pulitzer Prize—and set in motion a new chain of unimaginable horror. For there is a monster out there, and he is not through with killing." On a special side note? At the age of 10, Johannson appeared in Warner Bros.' 1995 feature adaptation of the novel in what would be her second film role. Hall is set to executive produce the limited series alongside Johansson, Jonathan Lia, and Keenan Flynn of These Pictures. Zara Duffy, Head of Television for These Pictures, is overseeing on behalf of the company, with Warner Bros. TV serving as the studio.