Netflix darling Harlan Coben explains why his leading character hasn’t made it to screen

Bestselling author is behind several Netflix mystery hits, including ‘Fool Me Once’ and ‘Stay Close’

Annabel Nugent
Monday 20 May 2024 11:33 BST
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Louise Thomas

Louise Thomas

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Popular crime writer Harlan Coben has shed some light on why one of his most loved characters is yet to make it into a Netflix adaptation.

Coben, 62, has sold approximately 80 million books worldwide, with several of his titles adapted for screen by Netflix in a 14-series production deal with the streaming giant.

The author already has eight shows already on the platform, including Safe (2018), The Stranger (2020) and Stay Close (2021).

Most recently, Fool Me Once (an adaptation of his 2016 book, starring Michelle Kegan) debuted at the beginning of the year. As is the case with most Coben adaptations, the show proved to be a huge hit for Netflix, having amassed almost 100 million viewers since its release.

Fans of Coben’s books, however, will notice that one central character of his novels is yet to make an appearance on screen.

Myron Bolitar, a hot-headed sports agent turned accidental detective, is the protagonist of the Myron Bolitar series of thrillers by Coben, which began in 1995 with Deal Breaker and encompasses 12 titles in total.

The 12th book in the thriller series, Think Twice, was released earlier this month.

In a new interview with The Times, Coben explained the reason behind Myron’s absence from the adaptations.

Harlan Coben (Claudio Marinesco/PA)
Harlan Coben (Claudio Marinesco/PA)

The author said that he has a very specific image of the character in his head, and is concerned that an actor will get it wrong.

Responding to the interviewer’s suggestion that Stanley Tucci play Myron, Coben said: “Yeah, big fan, but he’s a little smaller.” Tucci is 172cm tall.

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Earlier this year, Netflix announced that two further Coben adaptations are in the works.

Fans have suggested Stanley Tucci would be a good fit to portray Myron
Fans have suggested Stanley Tucci would be a good fit to portray Myron (Getty Images)

Missing You and Run Away will be the ninth and 10th adaptations to be produced, respectively. Filming for Missing You (adapted from Coben’s 2014 book of the same name) will begin in the UK in spring 2024.

The series follows Detective Kat Donovan whose fiancé Josh disappeared 11 years ago. To her shock, she comes across his face when swiping profiles on a dating app. His reappearance triggers a chain reaction of events that will see her diving into long-buried secrets from her past, including her father’s murder.

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