The Suspicious Staircase Tragedy Is Getting An HBO Series

Image via YouTube | The Staircase | Official Trailer [HD] | Netflix

Colin Firth Challenges The Staircase As Convicted Novelist, Michael Peterson, For HBO

Oh, you’re a fan of true crime? Well, you can bet you are already up-to-date on the bizarre case of Kathleen Peterson’s murder upon a staircase in her home and the conviction of her floosy husband, Michael Peterson. Kathleen’s sudden and tragic death in 2001 has sparked much attention from the media and inspired episodes of Forensic Files, Cold Case, The New Detectives, and so much more – including a Netflix series which dives into full detail. Now, we’re getting a new take on the horrible death in a limited HBO series with a powerhouse star as novelist Michael.


According to The Hollywood Reporter, legendary actor Colin Firth is signed on to portray Michael in the upcoming series. The eight-episode show comes from Maggie Cohn, a showrunner of another standout series, American Crime Story, and produced by female-run company, Annapurna Television. The plot will be all about Michael, taking us on a journey through his life – which has been really messy, so you know this is going to be absolutely amazing.

If you’re not familiar on why you’ll want to tune in – let’s take a quick glance at Michael’s life. He’s currently pushing eighty-years-old, so first that’s a lot of story to tell. He was married twice to two women, having four children with his first wife, and was once a popular author who then suffered from severe writer’s block. His wife, Kathleen (nee: Atwater), was wealthy and brought into his life an abundance of money and a young stepdaughter. Kathleen sadly died after falling down the stairs when Michael was allegedly outside, but there was blood everywhere. He claims her to have been drunk and on valium, so clumsiness was her downfall, yet a medical examiner declared her death a homicide. However, and suspiciously, Michael’s friend died in the exact way fifteen years earlier. While he was not involved in that particular death, rumors have risen that it inspired him to figure out how to get away with murder. But, for those who are unfamiliar, why would Michael want his wife to die? Clutch your pearls.

Kathleen had allegedly sleuthed and discovered Michael was cheating on her with younger men and had an entirely different life – a gay one – and was completely ashamed and embarrassed that her husband was sleeping with men. Michael’s defense in court was that he was in an open marriage and honest with his wife of his sex life. Michael was eventually convicted of her murder and spent almost nine years in prison until… an owl came into the situation. A neighbor came forward years later believing that an owl chased Kathleen and was the reason she had blows to the head and fell down the stairs. Seriously. Michael was released from prison in 2010 – a year after the owl theory that has everyone scratching their heads. The saga is bizarre, to say the least, and this is going to be a series not to miss.

 No additional casting details or a premiere date has been released, but many of us true crime obsessed fans are going to have our eyes glued to the screen.

Writer’s Note A: This is the opinion of one Instinct Magazine contributor and does not reflect the views of Instinct Magazine itself or fellow contributors.

Source: Hollywood Reporter

2 thoughts on “The Suspicious Staircase Tragedy Is Getting An HBO Series”

  1. Your mad that Colin Firth is playing a closeted murderer who was in long term relationships with women the majority of his life? Get a grip,

  2. Here goes Colin Firth taking another LGBTQ role after he just stated that more of us should be hired and should be considered. Very hypocritical, exploit us just to make money. He is not an ally.


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