Anna Kendrick has signed on to star in Rodney & Sheryl, a drama based on the true story of the time that a serial killer competed on and won a date on popular TV game show, The Dating Game. The killer, Rodney Alcala, was in the midst of a killing spree in 1978 when he brazenly took part in the show. Kendrick will play Cheryl Bradshaw, the contestant.
The film will be directed by Chloe Okuno, based on a Black List script by Ian MacAllister McDonald. Netflix has acquired the rights.
Incredibly, at that time of his appearance on the show, Alcala had murdered five women and been convicted(!) of the attempted murder of a 12-year-old girl. This is why reality shows are supposed to do background checks! They were far more lax back then. Bradshaw was then supposed to go on a chaperoned date with Alcala, but was put off by his odd vibe (duh).
Two years later, Alcala was sentenced to death for murder. He appealed several times, but when advances in DNA were made, he was tied to even more murders. Detectives have estimated he may have killed as many as 130 people. With California declaring a moratorium on death penalty cases in 2019, he’s currently rotting in state prison.
The film will revolve around the events of the game show, and should be a pretty fascinating experience. It’s almost inexplicable that this not only happened, but isn’t more of a well known thing. An active serial killer on a dating show during a killing spree! No word yet on who will play Alcala opposite Kendrick.
Okuno is an up-and-coming filmmaker who is also attached to direct Bodies. Bodies. Bodies. for A24, while she’s also writing the remake of 1977 supernatural thriller Audrey Rose for Orion Pictures.