Sunday, December 17, 2017
Books

Tampa author Michael Connelly plans to get Harry Bosch books onto TV screens

Fans of the fictional Harry Bosch — and there are millions of them — might just be seeing the hard-edged, haunted Los Angeles homicide detective on their TV screens sometime soon.

Author Michael Connelly, Bosch's creator, announced Tuesday that he has teamed with writer Eric Overmyer (Treme, The Wire), who will be the project's showrunner, and production company Fuse Entertainment (Burn Notice, The Killing) to develop a TV series based on Connelly's novels. They will be pitching the show to cable channels.

No roles have been cast yet, but the first question for fans is who will play Bosch. "I've carried a wholly madeup image of Harry in my head for more than 20 years," Connelly, 55, wrote in an email, "so I am not expecting to see a visual twin to that image. But I am sure that there will be actors out there that can convey the inner turmoil and workings of Harry's mind. Harry is relentless. They have to find someone who can look relentless."

Connelly, a Florida native and University of Florida graduate who lives in Tampa with his family, has written more than two dozen novels that have sold 55 million copies worldwide. Most of them have been part of the Bosch series — the first, The Black Echo, was published in 1992; the 18th, The Black Box, will be out in November.

Hieronymous "Harry" Bosch is an LAPD homicide detective whose job often pits him against serial killers. Orphaned as a boy when his mother was murdered, Bosch is also haunted by his experiences in the war in Vietnam and his own propensity toward violence. He loves jazz and, in the later books, his daughter and not much else, but he's a bulldog when it comes to solving wickedly convoluted cases Connelly creates for him.

Those cases, and Bosch's character, grew out of the years Connelly spent as a crime reporter at the Los Angeles Times before he began writing fiction full time. He has also written several novels about Bosch's half-brother, shady Los Angeles lawyer Mickey Haller. The first of those, The Lincoln Lawyer, became a 2011 film starring Matthew MacConaughey. Connelly is developing a TV series about Haller for ABC.

Fans might wonder why it has taken this long for a memorable character like Bosch to make it to the screen. Paramount bought movie rights to two of the Bosch books in the 1990s but never went forward with them. In 2010, Connelly sued Paramount and eventually bought back the rights to his character.

Connelly says, "I simply didn't want to leave him in the hands of people who didn't care about him or understand what they had. There are plenty of people in Hollywood who know and get the character. I needed to rescue Harry and get him to some of those people. I think I have done that and am very happy."

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