The mysterious inner workings of NXIVM, the so-called Hollywood sex cult, are heading to the small screen.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Annapurna Television has obtained the rights to Barry Meier’s 2017 New York Times exposé, “Inside a Secretive Group Where Women Are Branded,” which explores the alleged sex cult founded by Keith Raniere.
While there is no official network attached to the project, it is reported that “Westworld” actress Shannon Woodward has signed on along with Annapurna Television’s Megan Ellison, Sue Naegle and Susan Goldberg, who are signed on as executive producers.
Meier interviewed former NXIVM members who recalled their experiences of being branded and “enslaved” as “followers” of Raniere’s alleged women’s empowerment group in a New York Times piece.
“When women join what they’re told is a secret sisterhood created to empower them, they find themselves psychologically enthralled and horrifically sexually enslaved to its leader—and their flesh branded with his initials,” Annapurna Television said in the official description.
The news comes after the arrests of both group leader, Raniere, and alleged sex traffic recruiter, former “Smallville” star, Allison Mack.
Mack, who played high school newspaper editor Chloe Sullivan on the CW’s “Smallville” for 10 seasons, is believed to have worked as a slave “master” and “pimp” recruiting unsuspecting women to join NXIVM, according to prosecutors. She then required the women she recruited to engage in sexual activity with Keith Raniere, the cult’s leader, who paid Mack in return.
After her arrest, Mack pleaded not guilty to sex trafficking in federal court in Brooklyn on Friday, April 20.
Both Mack and Raniere face between 15 years to life behind bars if convicted of charges ranging from conspiracy to commit forced labor to sex trafficking.
Following Mack’s arrest last week in New York, she was detained at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, but a judge granted her release on $5 million bail on Tuesday.
Upon her release, Mack returned to California to live with her parents in the suburban Los Angeles city of Los Alamitos until her next court appearance on May 3.
Fox Andrew O’Reilly contributed to this report.