USA Network has announced a pickup from Universal Cable Productions (UCP) of the anthology series “The Sinner.” The first installment of the close-ended series follows a young mother (Jessica Biel) who, when overcome by an inexplicable fit of rage, commits a startling act of violence and to her horror has no idea why. The event launches an inverted and utterly surprising crime thriller whose driving force is not the “who” or the “what” — but the “why” — as an investigator (Bill Pullman) finds himself obsessed with uncovering the woman’s buried motive. Together they travel a harrowing journey into the depths of her psyche and the violent secrets hidden in her past.
“The Sinner” is executive produced by Jessica Biel and Michelle Purple, through their company Iron Ocean. The pilot was written by executive producer Derek Simonds (“When We Rise”) and is based on Petra Hammesfahr’s book of the same name. Charlie Gogolak also serves as executive producer. Antonio Campos (“Christine”) directed the pilot and also served as an executive producer.
USA Network’s current pilot slate also includes “Damnation,” from executive producers Tony Tost (“Longmire”), James Mangold (“Walk the Line”), and Guymon Casady (“Game of Thrones”) and Daniel Rappaport (“Office Space”) on behalf of Entertainment 360, with the pilot directed and executive produced by David Mackenzie (“Hell or High Water”); “Unsolved,” a scripted true crime serial chronicling the police investigations into the murders of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls, directed by Emmy winner Anthony Hemmingway (“The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story”); and “The Tap.” from executive producers Andrew Lenchewski (“Royal Pains”), Rob Reiner and Alan Greisman of Reiner/Greisman (“The Bucket List”) and Charlie Ebersol of The Company (“The Profit”). Along with “The Sinner” all four pilots hail from Universal Cable Productions.