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Law & Order: SVU sort of went there, now Lifetime is fully going there with a TV movie based on the NXIVM story. Lifetime’s NXIVM Cult: A Mother’s Nightmare (the working title), follows the true story of Catherine Oxenberg and her fight to save daughter India from what Lifetime describes as a “dangerous sex cult.”
Andrea Roth of Rescue Me fame will play Catherine. Twilight and Nurse Jackie veteran Peter Facinelli is set to play Keith Raniere, Jasper Polish will play Catherine’s daughter India and Sara Fletcher will take on the role of Smallville star and NXIVM associate Allison Mack.
Set for a fall 2019 debut, the movie follows what happens after Catherine took her daughter to a NXIVM seminar.
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“Led by the extremely enigmatic Keith Raniere, Catherine can’t help but shake the feeling there’s more than meets the eye with the self-help organization. Despite Catherine’s best efforts, India is drawn deeper into the cult, eventually joining a secret sorority of female members who are branded with the cult leader’s initials, ordered to maintain a restricted diet and forced to recruit other women as sex slaves,” Lifetime said in a press release. “NXIVM Cult: A Mother’s Nightmare tells the story of a mother who will stop at nothing to get her daughter back and exposes the intricate seductive power of Allison and Keith and the mental and physical abuse India fell victim to.”
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Oxenberg serves as executive producer alongside Judith Verno, Yfat Reiss Gendell and Richie Kern. Lisa Robinson is directing with a script by Adam Mazer.
In April 2018, news broke that a TV show based on the alleged sex slavery ring was in development. In June 2019, Raniere was found guilty of sex trafficking and racketeering. Mack pleaded guilty to racketeering.
The NXIVM movie is just the latest in a strong of ripped-from-the-headlines tales including Abducted: The Mary Stauffer Story starring Alyson Hannigan and Trapped: The Alex Cooper Story starring Addison Holley, Ian Lake and Sarah Booth.