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Adultery site Ashley Madison is hooking up with TV.
Canadian producer marblemedia and U.S. partner Out East Entertainment are set to produce a scripted drama inspired by the users of the site, who privately reveal why they want to — or have had — affairs. “This is a chance to get the roadmap,” Ashley Madison CEO Noel Biderman tells The Hollywood Reporter. “All of those market segmentations that people fall into will be explored and exposed through characters that inhabit the show.”
Don’t expect a Red Shoe Diaries–style affair, however, with bras and panties flying. “There’s a whole new story to tell about the mind of the cheating man and woman,” Biderman says, as the in-development drama will explore the taboo world of extramarital affairs in the digital age and how they evolve. “We’d all liked to have been a fly on the wall as Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton fooled around in the Oval Office, and we’d all loved to have been there when Tiger Woods bedded mistress after mistress,” Biderman explains.
But the series is not just about politicians or celebrities having no-strings-attached sex. “This is about your best friend. This is your neighbor, this is your school teacher,” he says. Biderman adds that characters in the drama may be men cheating out of revenge because of what their partner did to them, or women no longer willing to live like nuns in a loveless marriage.
The scripted drama also will feature a character modeled on Biderman, a family man who does not follow his own advice to have an affair. “Here we are, this corporation run by a married guy with a family who himself has all these challenges in marriage and is helping millions of people have affairs,” he says.
Matt Hornburg, the Los Angeles-based co-CEO of marblemedia, said the drama’s producers are close to attaching a head writer to explore an online world of “sexy dating” and what that means for monogamy today. “We’re creating a TV series that we want, and will sell globally. We’ll want the subject matter to intrigue audiences around the world,” he said.
Biderman insisted that the show won’t follow in the footsteps of programs like USA’s Satisfaction, which featured a woman breaking her marriage vows with a male prostitute. “You know what percentage of women in America will actually have affairs with a male prostitute?” Biderman asks. “A tiny, tiny sliver.”
The character-driven Ashley Madison drama will instead hew closer to what Biderman says is the 40 percent of women who will commit adultery during their married lives. The series will be executive produced by Biderman, Hornburg, Mark Bishop, Steven Marrs and Alex Hertzberg.
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