Lifetime is working on “Girl in the Basement,” part of the network’s Ripped from the Headlines slate. The movie is inspired by actual events of a young woman imprisoned in her family home, and stars Stefanie Scott as Sara Cody, Judd Nelson as her father Don, and Joely as her mother Irene.
Under the Broader Focus initiative, Lifetime reunites with Elisabeth Röhm who is making her directorial debut with the project, and executive producer Manu Boyer who directed Röhm in last year’s Family Pictures movie. Röhm will also make a cameo in the movie. Produced by Big Dreams Entertainment and Swirl for Lifetime, “Girl in the Basement” will debut in 2021.
“We believe in Elisabeth and know her craft as an actress will be invaluable as she steps behind the camera to direct,” said Tanya Lopez, EVP Movies, Limited Series and Original Movie Acquisitions, Lifetime & LMN. “Elisabeth’s passion and commitment will bring out incredible performances from Stefanie, Judd and Joely for this extremely shocking story.”
“I am profoundly impressed with Lifetime for making this brave movie. As I step behind the camera for the first time, I am beyond grateful and indebted to Tanya Lopez for being my champion and making this moment in my life possible. Thanks to Sebastian Dungan who developed the project and believed in the story from the start. I am profoundly grateful to my creative EP Manu Boyer for guiding me as a first-time director and sharing in our third movie collaboration. I am humbled by the support of my Lifetime family for pushing me to this next step in my career,” said Elisabeth Röhm.
“I love working with Elisabeth. I loved directing her as an actress and I am very happy to guide her through her first steps as a director and continue this great creative collaboration,” said Manu Boyer.
The description reads, “Inspired by actual events, Girl in the Basement is the horrific story of Sara (Stefanie Scott), a vibrant teen girl who was looking forward to her 18th birthday so she could move away from her controlling father Don (Judd Nelson). But before she could ever blow out the candles, her world became extremely dark after Don imprisons her in the basement of their home. While Don tries to convince wife Irene (Joely Fisher) that Sara ran away, he would secretly visit her in the basement to torture and rape her while Irene and her sister Amy (Emily Topper) continued living upstairs. As the years pass, Sara gives birth to several children, alone in the basement. Don eventually brings up their youngest son, leaving him on the doorstep for Irene to find with a note from Sara saying that was her son and she couldn’t care for him, leaving Irene to finally accept Don’s claims about Sara. After decades of captivity, Sara finally escapes, and her family learns the devastating truth about what had been going on for over 20 years right beneath their feet.”
The network’s 2020 Ripped from the Headlines slate of “Stolen By My Mother: The Kamiyah Mobley Story,” “Chris Watts: Confessions of a Killer,” “Poisoned Love: The Stacey Castor Story,” “Neighbor in the Window,” and “You Can’t Take My Daughter” reached more than 25M viewers total viewers from January – April on Lifetime & LMN, according to the netowork.
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