The CW is developing a new Nancy Drew series from Runaways producers Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, who would produce via their Fake Empire banner alongside CBS TV Studios. This marks the third attempt at bringing Nancy Drew to the small screen in just as many years.
According to Deadline, CBS quickly decided to move ahead and adapt the books for television after the network acquired the rights to the Young Adult series, which had originally been published by Stratemeyer Syndicate and later Simon Schuster. The first attempt at a Nancy Drew TV series happened back in 2015 and went to pilot with actress Sarah Shahi in the titular role. Unfortunately, that project was passed over for famously skewing “too female,” despite having a pilot that tested well. An attempt was also made from NBC, who developed the series with the same team from the Drew pilot. Unlike Drew, however, that project seemingly never went to pilot and ultimately died off.
Should Nancy Drew go to pilot at The CW, the series will set itself part from the prior two attempts by focusing more on the source material, rather than attempting to age up the character for more of a “sequel” approach. This means Nancy will not be in her 30s in this take; instead, The CW series will see her as an 18-year-old in the summer after her high school graduation.
The Magicians‘ Noga Landau will pen the script, which will see Drew return home following a family tragedy, where she finds herself embroiled in a ghostly murder investigation. Landau will executive produce with Schwartz and Savage, who also produce the Dynasty reboot for The CW, as well as Marvel’s Runaways for Hulu.
The Nancy Drew books were written by a collection of writers, although they were all published under the pseudonym Carolyn Keene. If Nancy Drew is ordered to series, it’ll mark the third successful Drew series to hit the small screen; the character was last seen in a big screen adaptation which was led by Emma Roberts in 2007.