The Murder That Inspired ‘Twin Peaks’ to Become New Documentary, Non-Fiction Book

“Twin Peaks” fans have a new documentary to look forward to thanks to “Blonde, Beautiful, and Dead: The Murder Mystery That Inspired Twin Peaks.” Production company Metabook Entertainment confirmed to MovieMaker magazine this week that an imprint of Amazon Publishing has picked up the rights to the upcoming non-fiction book of the same name and has plans to adapt the project into a documentary. Both the book and the documentary will cover the murder of Hazel Drew, a young woman who died in Sand Lake, New York during the summer of 1908.

Per a statement from Metabook Entertainment, “Blonde, Beautiful, and Dead” will “investigate the secrets, corruption, and gender politics one small town community tried to keep buried” amid the Hazel Drew murder scandal. The book comes from authors David Bushman and Mark Givens and is eyeing a 2021 release date. Mark Frost, who co-created “Twin Peaks” with David Lynch, used the murder of Hazel Drew as inspiration for the acclaimed series’ Laura Palmer murder mystery. Frost will write the forward to the book.

“The first true crime story that captivated me as a kid, the Hazel Drew murder draws you into a nexus of power, money and sexual politics that feels utterly contemporary,” Frost said in a statement to MovieMaker. “This haunting tale also provided the nightmare fuel for a fictional tragedy that, decades later, asked the question: Who killed Laura Palmer?”

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The “Blonde, Beautiful, and Dead” documentary adaptation is to be directed by Benjamin Alfonsi. The filmmaker told MovieMaker, “It’s been incredibly rewarding to see Hazel’s story take on a life of its own. I hope this documentary will give her a voice on screen that she didn’t have in real life.”

“Although we both came to this story initially through our fascination with ‘Twin Peaks,’ we have come to realize — in the years we have spent investigating the murder of Hazel Drew — that this is an incredibly gripping and scandalous murder mystery in its own right,” authors Bushman and Givens added in their own joint statement.

Amazon Publishing imprint Thomas & Mercer is planning a winter 2021 release for the book. Amazon Studios has a first-look deal with Metabook Entertainment for dramatic TV and film rights.

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