Hulu will bring Michael Keaton to center stage in its new limited series, Dopesick. The project comes from Beth Macy’s bestselling book under the same name, according to Deadline.
Slated to premiere in 2021, the series was acquired from Danny Strong, co-creator and executive producer of Empire, Warren Littlefield, executive producer of The Handmaid’s Tale, and Fox 21 Television Studios. The show will be written by Strong and directed by Barry Levinson (Rain Man). Keaton will serve as an executive producer with Strong, Levinson, Littlefield, Macy, John Goldwyn (Dexter) and Karen Rosenfelt (Twilight).
Dopesick is described as an “ambitious, harrowing, and compelling look into the epicenter of America’s struggle with Opioid addiction. It takes viewers from a distressed Virginia mining community, to the hallways of the DEA, and to the opulence of “one percenter: Big Pharma Manhattan. The unsparing yet deeply human portraits of the various affected families and their intersecting stories hold up a mirror to where America is right now, while shining a hopeful light on the heroes battling the worst drug epidemic in American history,” via Deadline.
Keaton is the first cast member to sign on to the project; he will portray doctor Samuel Finnix who actively tries to avoid the involvement of himself or his practice with the secrecy of Big Pharma.
The rights to Dopesick have changed hands frequently from the time Macy optioned her book for television development in 2018. The book, Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors and the Drug Company that Addicted America, started at Fox 21 and shifted to FX. As of Feb 2019, Dopesick went to Hulu and gained speed with the addition of Levinson and Keaton to the project, via Deadline.
This will be Strong’s first Hulu series. In a statement, he said, “I’m so thrilled to tell this story with a company as bold and as daring as Hulu,” Strong said. “The opioid crisis is one of the most important stories of our time and I’m honored to not only pay tribute to its victims but to shine a light on the heroes that fought back. Laws were broken and many lies were told. The system failed us and Dopesick is going to show everyone how it all happened,” via Deadline.
There is currently not a trailer for the series, but it will be expected to stream on Hulu in 2021.