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HBO and Guillermo del Toro Developing 'Hitchcockian' Drama about Dioramas


Expanding on the criminology-by-way-of-diorama notion previously explored on television by George Costanza, HBO, Guillermo del Toro, and novelist Sara Gran are developing a series about the real-life '50s housewife who solved grisly murders through dollhouse crime scene reconstructions.

The cable network has bought the rights to The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death, Corinne May Botz's 2004 book about Frances Glessner Lee, a wealthy heiress who founded the nation's first forensic pathology program with Harvard's Department of Legal Medicine. The intricate diorama's Lee constructed to study actual cases are still reportedly used at the school to this day, though by now you can probably see where some jerk circled the clue and the teacher had to erase it.

Del Toro--who is also meant to be developing a Bill Bixby-less Hulk series, let's not forget--will executive produce and direct for the show, while Gran will write (she also writes for TNT's Southland) and co-executive produce. Despite this pedigree and HBO's impressive track record for crime and drama, the series is not expected to suddenly make dollhouses cool. Keep the collection at your parents' place.

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