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Netflix orders Serial-esque crime doc

Netflix has ordered Making a Murderer, a ten-part documentary about a thirty-year-long homicide investigation that has been likened to hit podcast Serial.

Making a Murderer will be part of the streaming service’s doc originals line-up and will be first seen at the DOC NYC festival later this week (November 13), possibly in an effort to ensure eligibility for relevant awards categories.

The doc series follows the story of Steven Avery, an outsider who is convicted and almost two decades later exonerated of a brutal assault, prompting reforms to the criminal justice system in the US.

Filmmakers Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos follow the trials central to the case and interview those involved, covering the alleged miscarriage of justice and police wrongdoing.

“There are an unbelievable number of twists and turns in the story arc of Making a Murderer, it feels like it has to be fictional,” said Lisa Nishimura, Netflix VP of original documentary programming.

“Ricciardi and Demos have navigated very complex terrain and skillfully woven together an incredible series that leaves you feeling like you’re right in the middle of the action.”

“If we had not been there to witness these events we would have trouble believing they actually occurred. Our goal has always been to share that experience with viewers. Our partnership with Netflix has allowed us to tell this story in a way that wouldn’t have been possible anywhere else,” said directors Ricciardi and Demos.

The series launches on the SVOD service around the world on December 18. Commentators have contended the show represents Netflix’s play for the middle-aged female demographic that cable channels Investigation Discovery and Crime & Investigation currently dominate.