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New HBO Max crime drama casts Toni Collette to star opposite Colin Firth

Toni Collette in Knives Out
(Image credit: Lionsgate)

Toni Collette is set to co-star with Colin Firth in The Staircase, a new crime drama from HBO Max.

The limited series will explore the life of novelist Michael Peterson (played by Firth), his North Carolina family, and the suspicious death of his wife, Kathleen (Collette) in 2001. The drama is based on the true crime documentary of the same name, which originally aired in 2004 and went on to inspire shows like Serial. Director Jean-Xavier de Lestrade revisited the story twice for updates on legal developments, and Netflix released The Staircase as a 13-episode series in 2018. 

The Staircase has been in the works at Annapurna Television since 2019, with Harrison Ford originally in talks to star as Peterson. The Devil All the Time director Antonio Campos and American Crime Story producer Maggie Cohn are on board as showrunners and writers, with Campos directing six of the eight episodes.

Collette has had a busy few years – she's recently starred in hit movies like the horror flick Hereditary and the whodunnit comedy Knives Out. She last appeared in the Netflix sci-fi thriller Stowaway, and we can next see her in Guillermo del Toro's upcoming movie Nightmare Alley. Collette is no stranger to the small screen, either – she was nominated for the Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series Golden Globe for her role in Netflix's Unbelievable, and she's set to lead another Netflix series, Pieces of Her.

While we wait for The Staircase to arrive on HBO Max, make sure you've ticked all the best TV shows of 2020 off your watchlist first. Make sure you've checked out the best HBO Max prices, too. 

I’m an Entertainment Writer at GamesRadar+, covering everything film and TV-related across the Total Film and SFX sections – I help bring you all the latest news and the occasional feature, too. I’ve previously written for publications like HuffPost and i-D after getting my NCTJ Diploma in Multimedia Journalism.