NBC in talks for John Grisham's 'The Firm' TV series

Two decades after its publication, a bestselling John Grisham novel might finally come to primetime.

NBC is in negotiations for a full-season order for a project based on Grisham’s 1991 blockbuster The Firm.

A TV version of the book (which was also made into a movie starring Tom Cruise) has been making the rounds for years and was once set up at CBS. The original story follows an ambitious young attorney who’s unwittingly hired by a crime organization’s legal outfit.

Grishman is on board as a non-writing executive producer, with former Law & Order producer Lukas Reiter as showrunner and eOne Television as the primary production company, which is also selling the show internationally. If it closes, the straight-to-series order will be for 22 episodes.

The Firm sold 7 million copies and helped launch the modern legal thriller novel genre. The story always seemed like a potential solid fit for a cable channel like FX or AMC, but seems challenging for broadcast.

What do you think: Would you stay tuned after, say, The Biggest Loser to watch NBC’s The Firm?

Comments (44 total) Add your comment
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  • kevin

    Didn’t NBC just have that “Harry’s Law” show on? Do they really need another lawyer show?.. and they wonder why they’re the last place network.

    • Dave

      Your comment would make sense if the other three major networks didn’t also have repetitive programming. And for what it’s worth, NBC’s programming is far more varied than CBS.

      • Grubi

        Very true. CBS comedies look somewhat similar. But CBS’s dramas are much much worse. Its the same show over and over. Cop/Lawyer/Doctor (but mostly cop) must solve a new big case every week. The CSI franchise has practically made an art form out of this formula.

      • Chip

        CBS has almost every excellent program the networks have to offer. NBC is way, way behind the curve and will remain there.

      • @Chip

        Wow, you are so wrong. CBS may be popular, but their programing sucks for the most part. Their only great show is The Good Wife. The rest of their dramas are all knock-offs of each other. None of them have anything creative or interesting to offer. It’s just a bunch of lame generic procedurals. As for their comedies, the only one worth watching is How I Met Your Mother, and even that isn’t as good as it used to be. The Chuck Lorre sitcoms are some of the worst shows on TV.
        Whereas NBC has great shows like Parenthood, Community, Parks and Rec, Chuck, and 30 Rock.

    • dexx

      Harry’s law is about a woman defending people. The Firm isn’t going to focus on the cases,but the conspiracy. They are different enough to coexist, especially when, as stated, shows that are almost identical are able to air.

  • EJ

    I would TOTALLY watch it!

    • UGH

      Perfect! I hated the movie adaptation just because they changed the entire second half of the book. I always felt that it would’ve made a better mini-series.

      • Luca

        I agree. But only if it is a miniseries or oneseason. If they try to drag it out, no way.

        But a solid 13-15 hours could work. With several of his books actually.

  • Woot

    When will they adapt his brother’s novel, “The Rural Juror” to the small screen?

    • bunnyman

      I’m a huge Kevin Grisham fan!

    • theBigE

      Ha! Thanks for the morning laugh. I love “The Rural Juror!”

      • barryzuckercorn

        I prefer “Urban Fervor”

  • S

    First the Paul Reiser show and now this? NBC really HAS created time travel to the 90s Jack Donaghy mentioned.

    • kate middleton

      ^ LOL.

    • dexx

      They started that when American Gladiators, Knight Rider, and Bionic woman were on lol

  • kate middleton

    I don’t really see this as a tv show. And I am so sick of legal dramas…but I digress.

    • Jackie

      I believe that once upon a time, they also tried to do ‘The Client’ as a TV show with Jo Beth Williams playing the part that Susan Sarandon played in the movie. As awesome as that book and movie were, that’s how awful the TV series was. I’ll be really curious to see who they cast as Mitch.

    • Bill McCutcheon

      I agree with your sentiments about not sure how this could be a tv show. It would be ideal as a tv movie as long as they stayed true to the book (unlike the Tom Cruise film) but not a series I don’t believe.

  • Shayan

    It’s a good story so if they get things right it could work well.

  • Barry

    This will bomb just like The Event did.

  • ari

    If they stick to the book unlike the movie….it would work.

  • Kathster

    I loved the book, was stunned at how they changed the movie (mail fraud). If they stay true to the book a tv show could be awesome.

  • Peggy

    I’m not sure how the story would fit into a series. For the story to continue, they would have to change the concept of what “The Firm” is. Does it continue to represent crime organizations?

    • Luca

      It sounds like they are thinking more a mini series. perhaps one on the 12-15 hour length rather than 4-6. Which could work as a midseason replacement type gig. Or if there’s not a show to replace they could air it during the summer.

  • redvector

    If it’s on NBC it will suck by default. If on the very off chance that the shows any good, it will be ignored. Because it’s on a network that’s mostly known for The Biggest Loser. A show where fat people get screamed at for two hours, throw up, forced to practically get naked for the weigh ins, and cry like little babies. I’m sure a sizeable portion of the audience is only watching in the hope that one of these fat bastards keels over and dies on camera.

  • Fridge

    Like others posting here I’d like to see The Firm get a second chance where they hopefully stick to the book. I saw the movie first when I was younger and then read the book when I was in highschool. I couldn’t believe how much they changed the ending. But I’m wondering how do you make it a show? How do you make it a show that lasts more than a season? I could see this turning into the next Prison Break–a show that should have been one, maybe two seasons at the most.

  • spellcheck

    Grisham, not Grishman at the beginning of the 4th paragraph!

  • nitemar

    It’s the Leno’s curse. NBC can’t get back on it';s feet since the Leno/Connan disgrace.

  • Kagnew

    I wouldn’t be watching biggest loser but I would set aside time to check “The Firm” out for awhile.

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