Bidding war over story about dogged mum hunting for killers

A bidding war has erupted over a widely-read story from The New York Times, titled She Stalked Her Daughter's Killers Across Mexico, One By One, as production companies in Hollywood fight to adapt the tragic, enthralling tale.

According to an exclusive report from entertainment trade publication The Hollywood Reporter, more than 16 production companies are seeking the screen rights to the Dec 13 article, written by investigative journalist Azam Ahmed.

Six-figure offers have reportedly been made.

The piece told the story of a mother named Miriam Rodriguez in Mexico, whose 20-year-old daughter was kidnapped and later murdered by a Mexican cartel in 2014.

Armed with a handgun, she took on false identities and trawled social media to hunt down those responsible for her daughter's brutal end.

Mrs Rodriguez's story was juxtaposed against the kidnapping and murder of a 14-year-old boy this year.

The companies fighting for the screen rights for this tale are said to include HBO's documentary division, Chernin Entertainment (The Greatest Showman, 2017), Makeready (Queen & Slim, 2019) and Thunder Road (John Wick, 2014).

The Hollywood Reporter said most production houses were seeking to adapt the story as a series rather than a film. The New York Times will act as producer on the eventual adaptation.

In recent years, production houses have eyed long-form journalism pieces for television and film.

Last year's crime drama Hustlers was based on New York magazine's 2015 article, The Hustlers At Scores, by Jessica Pressler.

Inventing Anna, Netflix's upcoming miniseries about the high-society scammer "Anna Delvey", whose real name is Anna Sorokin, is based on the 2018 New York Magazine article, How Anna Delvey Tricked New York's Party People, also written by Pressler.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 21, 2020, with the headline 'Bidding war over story about dogged mum hunting for killers'. Subscribe