SHOWTIME(R) ORDERS DRAMA PILOT "COERCION" STARRING SYDNEY CHANDLER WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY OSCAR(R) NOMINEE SUSANNAH GRANT
Inspired by the Life of Rebecca Bender, Project Produced by wiip
LOS ANGELES - August 23, 2021 - SHOWTIME has announced a pilot order for the drama series COERCION, written and directed by Oscar and Emmy(R) nominee Susannah Grant (Unbelievable, Erin Brockovich) and starring Sydney Chandler (Don't Worry Darling, Pistol). The series, produced by wiip, is inspired by the life of Rebecca Bender, a national leader on and survivor of sex trafficking. The announcement was made by Amy Israel, Executive Vice President, Scripted Programming, Showtime Networks Inc.
Bender is now one of the nation's foremost experts on the subject and a leading consultant for federal law enforcement on how to spot it, prosecute it and protect the victims in its web. The series picks up with her escape from this world after six years, her struggles to return to a "normal" life, and her emergence as a confident, funny and impassioned advocate for justice.
"COERCION is based on Rebecca Bender's personal story of entrapment in the world of sex trafficking, her escape and her stunning emergence as a relentless force against that world," said Israel. "We're excited to be working with Susannah, whose work as a writer and director is always sharply observed and moving. And Sydney Chandler promises to captivate audiences as she takes on this challenging role."
COERCION is executive produced by Grant, Bender, Gail Lyon, and Rosanna Arquette, who, in addition to being an acclaimed actress and producer, is a longtime advocate for survivors of sex trafficking. Paul Lee and Hope Hartman of wiip also serve as executive producers.
The project reunites producer Lyon with Grant, with whom she collaborated on Erin Brockovich, and with Chandler, who just wrapped production starring in the new Danny Boyle limited series Pistol, of which Lyon is also an executive producer. Chandler will next be seen making her feature debut in Olivia Wilde's new film, Don't Worry Darling, opposite Florence Pugh, Harry Styles, Chris Pine and Wilde.
Grant is an Oscar-nominated writer, producer and director whose resume includes Erin Brockovich, which earned her an Academy Award(R) nomination, a BAFTA nomination and a WGA nomination. Additional feature credits include In Her Shoes, 28 Days, Ever After, Charlotte's Web and Catch and Release, which she also directed. In television most recently, Grant served as showrunner, writer and director for the limited series, Unbelievable, which was nominated for WGA, PGA, and Emmy Awards, and was awarded a 2020 Peabody Award, a Critics Choice Award, the PEN America Award for Television Excellence, and was selected as one of AFI's Television Programs of the Year. Upcoming projects include the limited-series adaptation of Taffy Brodesser-Akner's novel Fleishman is in Trouble with Brodesser-Akner, Sarah Timberman and Carl Beverly and writing and executive producing the limited series Lessons in Chemistry with Brie Larson and Michael Costigan.
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