Did you know that the Ebola virus nearly swept through Washington DC in 1989?
Richard Preston’s nonfiction book The Hot Zone, which details the epidemic and the story of the scientists who worked to contain it, is finally set to be dramatised.
The rights to Preston's best-seller had previously been auctioned off to 20th Century Fox and producer Linda Obst for development into a movie in the early '90s. However, film producer Arnold Kopesen, who had bid and lost for the rights to the book, pressed ahead with a similar script, resulting in the 1995 film Outbreak.
Obst and director Ridley Scott had continued to plan a big-screen adaptation with Jodie Foster in the lead role. However, in light of the recent Ebola disasters in western Africa and Dallas, Texas, production is being sped up and The Hot Zone seems set for TV instead.
The new series will be produced by Scott and Obst, as well as Jim Hart and David Zucker. Coming Soon reports that Hart (responsible for the original screenplay) and Zucker will be writing, with Scott set to direct at least one episode.
The series will incorporate more recent real-life events from this year's crises. The number of planned episodes is not yet known.