It’s Deceptions time for Janicza Bravo.
The 39-year-old Latina writer/director has teamed up with Annapurna to write and direct a series adaptation of Ian Parker’s New Yorker article A Suspense Novelist’s Trail of Deceptions, which has Jake Gyllenhaal attached to star.
Published in February 2019, Parker’s story explores the complex life of former book editor Dan Mallory, whose debut psychological thriller, The Woman in the Window, written under the pseudonym A.J. Finn, was number one on the New York Times Bestseller list, the first debut novel to do so in 12 years.
The series will follow an unreliable narrator who nurses brain tumors he does not have and mourns family members who are not dead while preying on people’s sympathy to get away with almost anything. Bravo will co-write the pilot with Brian Savelson.
Bravo serves as an executive producer alongside Gyllenhaal and Riva Marker for Nine Stories as well as Annapurna.
“What may have started out as my dog ate homework turns into my mother died of cancers, my brother took his life and I have a double doctorate,” said Bravo. “Our protagonist is white, male and pathological. There is a void in him and he fills it by duping people. He’s a scammer. The series examines white identity and how we as an audience participate in making room for this behavior. Getting to partner with Annapurna and Nine Stories is a gift and I am most thrilled for what lies ahead.”
Bravo’s forthcoming second feature Zola, follows her 2017 debut indie comedy Lemon. Based on the viral Twitter thread detailing a stripper’s cross-country road trip gone wrong, Zola premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and will be released via A24 and Sony International. She’s also directed episodes for Atlanta, Dear White People, and FX’s Cate Blanchett-starrer Mrs. America.