Julia Roberts to Star in, Produce Mystery Thriller 'Fool Me Once'

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Julia Roberts

The novel was published last week by Penguin’s Dutton imprint, and the 'Money Monster' actress pounced quickly to begin developing through her Red Om Films banner.

Julia Roberts is attached to star in and produce a big-screen adaptation of Harlan Coben’s Fool Me Once.

The novel was published last week by Penguin’s Dutton imprint, and Roberts pounced quickly to begin developing through her Red Om Films banner. There's no studio attached at this stage.

The story centers on former special ops pilot Maya (Roberts), home from the war, who sees an unthinkable image captured by her nanny cam while she is at work: her 2-year-old daughter playing with Maya’s husband, Joe, who had been brutally murdered two weeks earlier. The footage begs the question: Can you believe everything you see with your own eyes, even when you desperately want to?

Despite being a staple on the New York Times best-seller list, Coben has found little traction on the big screen. Only one of his books has been adapted for film: 2006’s Tell No One, a French-language film directed by Guillaume Canet. Warner Bros. acquired remake rights to that project, with Ben Affleck at one point attached to direct and Chris Terrio writing. Three years ago, Paramount beat out several for Coben's Six Years, with Hugh Jackman attached to star, but that project has since stalled.

Roberts will produce Fool Me Once alongside Red Om partners Lisa Gillan and Marisa Yeres Gill. The actress, who most recently starred in Billy Ray's Secret in Their Eyes, will be seen in the Cannes world premiere of Jodie Foster's Money Monster opposite George Clooney. She also has Garry Marshall's ensemble film Mother's Day on the horizon.

CAA, which represents Roberts and Coben, packaged Fool Me Once. Roberts is additionally handled by Engelman & Company and Hirsch Wallerstein Hayum Matlof + Fishman. Coben also is represented by Lisa Vance at Aaron Priest Agency and attorney Michael Gendler of Gendler & Kelly.

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