According to Deadline, Golden Globe winner Oscar Isaac has entered negotiations to play the leading role in Amazon Studios’ series adaptation of Helltown, which is based on Casey Sherman’s crime thriller novel Helltown: The Untold Story of a Serial Killer on Cape Cod. The project hails from Robert Downey Jr. and Susan Downey, who are executive producing through their Team Downey banner.
This would mark Isaac’s first major TV project after leading Disney+’s live-action Moon Knight series. His next high-profile project is Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, where he’ll reprise his voice role as Miguel O’Hara/ Spider-Man 2099.
The 8-episode adaptation will be directed and executive produced by Swiss filmmaker Ed Berger, who recently won an Oscar for Best International Film for his work on Netflix’s war drama All Quiet on the Western Front. Should Isaac’s deal pushes through, he would be playing the role of writer Kurt Vonnegut, during the time when he was a struggling novelist and car salesman. Described as an immersive, unflinching, and shocking true crime narrative, the novel centers around Vonnegut’s investigation into a mysterious serial killer, as well as his obsession with catching him.
Helltown will be written by Mohamad El Masri, who has also been set as an executive producer along with Amanda Burrell for Team Downey. Sherman and Gena Konstantinakos are also attached to executive produce.
“Before Charles Manson, there was Tony Costa—the serial killer of Cape Cod. 1969: The hippie scene is vibrant in Provincetown, Massachusetts. Long-haired teenagers roam the streets, strumming guitars and preaching about peace and love… and Tony Costa is at the center of it all. To a certain group of smitten young women, he is known as Sire—the leader of their counter-culture movement, the charming man who speaks eloquently and hands out hallucinogenic drugs like candy. But beneath his benign persona lies a twisted and uncontrollable rage that threatens to break loose at any moment. Tony Costa is the most dangerous man on Cape Cod, and no one who crosses his path is safe,” the book synopsis reads.
“When young women begin to disappear, Costa’s natural charisma and good looks initially protect him from suspicion. But as the bodies are discovered, the police close in on him as the key suspect. Meanwhile, local writers Kurt Vonnegut and Norman Mailer are locked in a desperate race to secure their legacies as great literary icons—and they both set their sights on Tony Costa and the drug-soaked hippie culture that he embodies as their next promising subject, launching independent investigations that stoke the competitive fires between two of the greatest American writers.”