Ripley (TV series)

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Ripley
Genre
Created bySteven Zaillian
Based onThe Talented Mr. Ripley
by Patricia Highsmith
Written bySteven Zaillian
Directed bySteven Zaillian
Starring
Music byJeff Russo
Country of originUnited States
Original languages
  • English
  • Italian
No. of episodes8
Production
Executive producers
CinematographyRobert Elswit
Running time44–76 minutes
Production companies
Original release
NetworkNetflix
ReleaseApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)

Ripley is an American neo-noir psychological thriller television series created, written and directed by Steven Zaillian, based on Patricia Highsmith's 1955 crime novel The Talented Mr. Ripley. Starring Andrew Scott as Tom Ripley, with Dakota Fanning as Marge Sherwood and Johnny Flynn as Dickie Greenleaf, the eight-episode limited series is the first adaptation of Highsmith's novel to a series.

Ripley was originally set to air on Showtime, but in February 2023 the series was moved to Netflix. It premiered on April 4, 2024, and received critical praise for its writing, directing, production design, cinematography, score, and performances, particularly for Scott's portrayal of Tom Ripley.

Premise[edit]

In late 1950s New York, Tom Ripley, a down-at-the-heels con-man, is hired by a wealthy man to convince his prodigal son to return home from Italy. But Tom's introduction to Dickie Greenleaf's comfortable and leisurely life abroad turns out to be "the first step into a complex life of deceit, fraud and murder".[1]

Cast[edit]

Main[edit]

Guest[edit]

Episodes[edit]

No.TitleDirected byTeleplay byOriginal release date
1"I A Hard Man to Find"Steven ZaillianSteven ZaillianApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)
In New York City, in 1961, petty con artist Tom Ripley is approached by wealthy shipbuilder Herbert Greenleaf, who mistakes him for a friend of his spoiled, bohemian son, Dickie. Herbert pays Tom to go to Italy to convince Dickie to return home after years abroad, supposedly writing and painting. Tom goes to Atrani, where he meets Dickie and his girlfriend, Marge, who is writing a travel book about Atrani. Tom becomes enamored with the handsome Dickie and his carefree lifestyle.
2"II Seven Mercies"Steven ZaillianSteven ZaillianApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)
Tom confesses to Dickie about his father's scheme. Dickie is charmed by Tom's apparent sincerity and invites him to stay at his villa. Tom's friend Freddie Miles, a wealthy young English playwright, encounters the two at a cafe and becomes suspicious of Tom's motives. Freddie invites Dickie and Marge to spend Christmas with him skiing in Cortina. Tom writes to Mr. Greenleaf, claiming he is making progress on getting Dickie to return home, and requests more funds. Back at the villa, thinking he is alone, Tom puts on Dickie's clothing and begins imitating his mannerisms, when Dickie walks in and appears visibly annoyed. Dickie thinks Tom is infatuated with him, though Tom denies it.
3"III Sommerso"Steven ZaillianSteven ZaillianApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)
Tom receives a letter from Herbert, informing him that his attempts to persuade Dickie to return have been a failure. Dickie also receives a letter from his father telling him to be wary of Tom. Dickie offers to take Tom on a trip to Sanremo. They rent a small boat, and when they are far from shore, Dickie tells him that he and Marge are going to spend Christmas with Freddie in Cortina without him. When Dickie turns around to re-start the motor, Tom beats him to death with an oar. He ties the corpse to the boat's anchor, after removing and pocketing Dickie's personal accessories. When Tom attempts to dump the body overboard, his feet get caught in the anchor rope and he nearly drowns. He survives, and succeeds in heaving Dickie's body into the water. Back on shore, Tom submerges the boat, and wearing Dickie's ring, leaves Sanremo.
4"IV La Dolce Vita"Steven ZaillianSteven ZaillianApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)
Tom returns to Atrani and collects Dickie's personal effects, telling Marge that Dickie is now in Rome. Marge is skeptical. Tom sells some of Dickie's valuables and approaches a small-time mafioso, Carlo, about brokering the sale of Dickie's treasured sailboat. They disagree about their respective commissions, but eventually come to terms. Tom takes an apartment in Rome, where, using a doctored passport and having learned to forge Dickie's signature, he assumes his dead friend's identity and begins living his privileged life.
5"V Lucio"Steven ZaillianSteven ZaillianApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)
In Rome, Tom lives off Dickie's money. Using Dickie's portable typewriter (which has a distinctive "e" out of alignment), Tom composes letters to Marge and Dickie's parents to create the illusion that Dickie is still alive, but traveling while he takes stock of his life. Freddie, looking for Dickie, arrives unexpectedly in Rome at Tom's apartment and sees that he is impersonating Dickie. He knows about Tom's history as a petty criminal in New York, and intends to tell the authorities about Tom's scheme. As he heads for the door, Tom bludgeons him to death with a heavy glass ashtray. He drags the body downstairs, stuffs it in Freddie's Fiat, and leaves the car on a country road just out of town. He steals Freddie's ID documents and discards them down a sewer.
6"VI Some Heavy Instrument"Steven ZaillianSteven ZaillianApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)
The police discover Freddie's body and launch a murder inquiry. The incident makes front page news and Dickie is cited as a witness and possible suspect. Based on a tip from Freddie's lover, Max Yoder, Inspector Ravini interrogates Tom, assuming he is Dickie. Meanwhile, in Sanremo, the partially burned, submerged, blood-stained boat is discovered, further complicating the case. In Atrani, Marge discovers that Dickie's sailboat was sold and reads in the papers about Freddie's death. She goes to Rome to confront Tom about Dickie's whereabouts. Tom insists that Dickie has again left for a new destination. After Marge leaves, Tom decides to go to Palermo.
7"VII Macabre Entertainment"Steven ZaillianSteven ZaillianApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)
Inspector Ravini continues to investigate the case and searches Rome for Tom Ripley, whom he suspects may have been killed by Dickie in Sanremo. He believes Marge lied to him when she insisted that she saw Tom in Rome. Dickie's bank contacts Ravini over a signature mismatch on Dickie's monthly trust payout. Tom, writing as Dickie, resolves the matter with a letter, convincing the bank there was no fraud. The newspapers report that Tom Ripley is missing and that his disappearance might be connected to Freddie's murder. Tom decides to leave Rome, and heads to Venice.
8"VIII Narcissus"Steven ZaillianSteven ZaillianApril 4, 2024 (2024-04-04)
In Venice, Tom rents a palazzo under his real name and informs the Venetian police he is alive. When Ravini arrives to interview him about the disappearance of Dickie and Freddie's murder, Tom successfully disguises himself so he doesn't look like the man passing as Dickie who Ravini met in Rome. Tom is welcomed by Venice's high society, who are curious about Dickie, whom the press has dubbed the "fugitive playboy." Marge arrives and they attend a party together thrown by Pegeen Guggenheim. Herbert arrives in Italy and accepts the story that a despondent Dickie, depressed over his failure as an artist and involvement in Freddie's death, took his own life. Marge finishes her book about Atrani and sends a copy to Ravini. Thumbing through the book, the inspector is shocked when he sees a photo of the real Dickie Greenleaf.

Production[edit]

Development[edit]

Johnny Flynn
Johnny Flynn portrays Dickie Greenleaf
Dakota Fanning
Dakota Fanning portrays Marge Sherwood

On September 25, 2019, it was announced that Andrew Scott had been cast as Tom Ripley in Ripley, a television series to be adapted from Patricia Highsmith's Ripley novels. A series order of eight episodes was commissioned by Showtime, to be written and directed by Steven Zaillian, who pitched the series to the network.[4][5][6][7] He explained that adapting the material as a series rather than a feature film "allowed me to be more faithful to the story, tone, and subtleties of Highsmith's work. [I] tried to approach my adaptation in a way I imagined she might herself."[8] Zaillian serves as executive producer alongside Garrett Basch, Guymon Casady, Ben Forkner, Sharon Levy, and Philipp Keel, with Scott as a producer.[1] The series was co-produced by Showtime and Endemol Shine North America in association with Entertainment 360 and Filmrights.[1] Though designed as a limited series, further seasons are a possibility.[9]

Casting[edit]

The casting of Scott as Tom Ripley was announced in September 2019.[4][5] Johnny Flynn was cast as Dickie Greenleaf in January 2020,[10][11] and in March 2021, Dakota Fanning was cast as Marge Sherwood.[12][13] Eliot Sumner joined the cast in a recurring role in December 2021.[14] John Malkovich, who portrayed Ripley in the 2002 film Ripley's Game, was cast as Reeves Minot, a supporting character in Highsmith's later Ripley novels.[15]

Scott said of his portrayal, "You don't play the opinions, the previous attitudes that people might have about Tom Ripley ... I have to have the courage to create our own version and my own understanding of the character ... It was a heavy part to play. I found it mentally and physically really hard".[8] He described understanding what Ripley does as "arduous", explaining, "Certain things I can understand, but other things—it's actually the blankness that's sometimes hard to engage with."[8]

Filming[edit]

Shooting was originally planned to begin in Italy in September 2020,[16] but was later delayed to 2021 due to COVID-19.[13] Robert Elswit was the cinematographer of all eight episodes, and shot with Arri Alexa LF digital cameras.[17] Ripley is presented in black-and-white. Zaillian explained, "The edition of the Ripley book I had on my desk had an evocative black-and-white photograph on the cover. As I was writing, I held that image in my mind. Black and white fits this story—and it's gorgeous."[8]

Release[edit]

Ripley was initially announced to be broadcast on Showtime,[4][5] but in February 2023, Deadline Hollywood reported that the series would be moving to Netflix.[9] It was released on April 4, 2024.[2]

Reception[edit]

Audience viewership[edit]

Ripley debuted at number six on Netflix's Top 10 TV English titles for the tracking week of 1-7 April 2024 with 16.9 million hours viewed.[18] On the following week, it remained at the same position and garnered 18.4 million viewing hours.[19]

Critical response[edit]

Andrew Scott received critical acclaim for his performance, with some reviews calling him the best portrayal of Tom Ripley.[20][21][22]

The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported an 85% approval rating with an average rating of 7.9/10, based on 127 critic reviews. The website's critics consensus reads, "Bathed in opulent black and white with a reptilian Andrew Scott holding the screen hostage, Steven Zaillian's sumptuous reinterpretation of Ripley draws fresh blood from Patricia Highsmith's insidious social climber."[23] On Metacritic, the series holds a weighted average score of 75 out of 100 based on 42 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[24]

Matt Schimkowitz of The A.V. Club gave the series an A− and said, "The fun of Ripley is always in how he gets away with his crimes, and Zaillian doesn't forget that."[25] Reviewing the series for The Mercury News, Randy Myers gave a rating of 3.5/4 and commented, "While some might be put off by Ripley's measured tempo and its detached icicle of a protagonist, noir fans won't be and will admire how effectively it revives an often overworked genre."[26] Linda Holmes of NPR described the series as "A meticulously built piece of filmmaking that references classic noir and Hitchcock as well as Italian cinema greats, and just looking at it shot by shot is a profound pleasure."[27] Judy Berman of Time wrote, "Scott... may be more than two decades older than his character as conceived by Highsmith (he doesn't look it) but has nonetheless given us the first definitive onscreen Ripley."[28]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Award Date of ceremony Category Nominee(s) Result Ref.
Gotham TV Awards June 4, 2024 Breakthrough Limited Series Ripley Nominated [29]
[30]
Outstanding Performance in a Limited Series Andrew Scott Won
Television Critics Association Awards July 12, 2024 Program of the Year Ripley Pending [31]
Outstanding Achievement in Drama Pending
Outstanding Achievement in Movies, Miniseries and Specials Pending
Outstanding New Program Pending
Individual Achievement in Drama Andrew Scott Pending

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Ripley: New Drama Series Starring Andrew Scott Coming Soon to Showtime". Showtime. Archived from the original on May 17, 2022. Retrieved January 13, 2020 – via sho.com.
  2. ^ a b c Petski, Denise (January 22, 2024). "Ripley Teaser Trailer Unveils First Look at Andrew Scott as Tom Ripley; Netflix Premiere Date". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 22, 2024.
  3. ^ a b c Knight, Lewis (April 5, 2024). "Ripley cast: Full list of characters in Netflix series starring Andrew Scott". Radio Times. Retrieved April 7, 2024.
  4. ^ a b c O'Connell, Michael (September 25, 2019). "Andrew Scott to Play Talented Mr. Ripley in Showtime Series". The Hollywood Reporter. Los Angeles, California: Eldridge Industries. Archived from the original on March 8, 2021. Retrieved January 7, 2020.
  5. ^ a b c Thorne, Will (September 25, 2019). "Fleabag Star Andrew Scott Cast as Lead in Showtime Patricia Highsmith Series". Variety. Archived from the original on September 25, 2019. Retrieved September 25, 2019.
  6. ^ "Showtime Orders Drama Series Ripley with Andrew Scott in Title Role" (Press release). Showtime Press Express. September 25, 2019. Archived from the original on September 28, 2019. Retrieved September 28, 2019 – via cbspressexpress.com.
  7. ^ Reddish, David (September 26, 2019). "Out actor Andrew Scott, Fleabag's hot priest, to play Tom Ripley for Showtime". Queerty. Archived from the original on May 2, 2021. Retrieved January 7, 2020.
  8. ^ a b c d Walsh, Savannah (December 12, 2023). "First Look: Andrew Scott Is a Crazy-Sexy Scammer in Ripley". Vanity Fair. Condé Nast. Archived from the original on December 12, 2023. Retrieved December 12, 2023.
  9. ^ a b Andreeva, Nellie (February 10, 2023). "Ripley Showtime Limited Series Starring Andrew Scott Moving to Netflix". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on March 19, 2023. Retrieved February 11, 2023.
  10. ^ Petski, Denise (January 22, 2020). "Johnny Flynn Joins Andrew Scott in Steven Zaillian's Tom Ripley Drama Series at Showtime". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on January 23, 2020. Retrieved January 22, 2021.
  11. ^ Crow, David (January 22, 2020). "Talented Mr. Ripley Series Adds Johnny Flynn to Cast". Den of Geek. Archived from the original on November 2, 2020. Retrieved January 22, 2021.
  12. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (March 11, 2021). "Dakota Fanning to Star Opposite Andrew Scott in Showtime's Ripley". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 12, 2021.
  13. ^ a b White, Peter (March 11, 2021). "Dakota Fanning Joins Showtime's Ripley Opposite Andrew Scott". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on March 11, 2021. Retrieved March 12, 2021.
  14. ^ Petski, Denise (December 9, 2021). "Ripley: Eliot Sumner Joins Andrew Scott, Johnny Flynn & Dakota Fanning In Showtime Drama Series". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on December 9, 2021. Retrieved December 10, 2021.
  15. ^ Knight, Lewis (April 4, 2024). "Ripley cast: Full list of characters in Netflix series starring Andrew Scott". Radio Times. Retrieved April 5, 2024.
  16. ^ Vivarelli, Nick (December 31, 2019). "Steven Zaillian Eyes September 2020 Start for Ripley Series Shoot in Italy". Variety. Archived from the original on January 2, 2020. Retrieved January 14, 2020.
  17. ^ Dillon, Mark (September 2022). "The Traditionalist". American Cinematographer. 103 (9). Hollywood, Los Angeles, U.S.: American Society of Cinematographers: 53, 60. ISSN 0002-7928.
  18. ^ "Netflix Global Top 10". Netflix. April 7, 2024. Retrieved May 16, 2024.
  19. ^ "Netflix Global Top 10". Netflix. April 14, 2024. Retrieved May 16, 2024.
  20. ^ Mangan, Lucy (April 4, 2024). "Ripley review – Andrew Scott is absolutely spellbinding". The Guardian. Retrieved April 23, 2024.
  21. ^ Naahar, Rohan (April 11, 2024). "Ripley review: Andrew Scott delivers the performance of the year in rip-roaring masterpiece, among Netflix's best shows ever". The Indian Express. Retrieved April 23, 2024.
  22. ^ Stacey, Pat (April 3, 2024). "Ripley review: Andrew Scott is mesmerising as the best Tom Ripley of them all – you won't be able to look away". Irish Independent. Retrieved April 23, 2024.
  23. ^ "Ripley: Season 1". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved May 21, 2024.
  24. ^ "Ripley: Season 1". Metacritic. Retrieved May 21, 2024.
  25. ^ Schimkowitz, Matt (April 4, 2024). "Ripley review: Mr. Ripley is as talented as ever". The A.V. Club. Retrieved April 7, 2024.
  26. ^ Myers, Randy (April 4, 2024). "What to watch: 'Ripley' is a sight to behold—and that's no con". The Mercury News. Retrieved April 7, 2024.
  27. ^ Holmes, Linda (April 7, 2024). "'Ripley' returns in black and white — and is so much better for it". NPR. Retrieved April 7, 2024.
  28. ^ Berman, Judy (April 4, 2024). "A New Netflix Series Makes Andrew Scott the Definitive Tom Ripley". Time. Retrieved April 7, 2024.
  29. ^ Verhoeven, Beatrice (May 14, 2024). "'Baby Reindeer', 'The Curse', 'Shogun' Among Inaugural Gotham TV Awards Nominees". Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on May 14, 2024.
  30. ^ Lewis, Hilary (June 4, 2024). "2024 Gotham TV Awards: 'Baby Reindeer', 'Mr. and Mrs. Smith', 'Colin From Accounts' Top Winners". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 5, 2024.
  31. ^ Longeretta, Emily (June 10, 2024). "'Baby Reindeer', 'Ripley' and 'Shogun' Lead 2024 TCA Awards Nominations: Full List". Variety. Retrieved June 10, 2024.

External links[edit]