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Dick Wolf Takes Storytelling To ‘Forensic Level’ With True Crime Series 'Blood & Money'
Executive Producers Jane Lipsitz and Dan Cutforth spoke with Oxygen about what it was like taking the revolutionary series and "applying it to the real world."
The iconic Dun Dun returns — and creator Dick Wolf’s legacy continues — with the 10-episode series, airing Saturdays at 9/8c on Oxygen. Every week, audiences are taken into a new murder, meeting the dedicated detectives tasked with solving real-life murders motivated by greed.
“Blood & Money” executive producers Jane Lipsitz and Dan Cutforth spoke with Oxygen’s Stephanie Gomulka, discussing what it took to take the brand’s traditional ripped-from-the-headlines content and transition the format into a new genre.
Lipsitz said, "'Blood & Money’ was inspired by a conversation we had with Dick Wolf, taking the incredibly successful format of ‘Law & Order’ and applying it to the real world."
Devoted L&O fans will immediately recognize the classic aesthetic used in the new series, including a voiceover by Steven Zirnkilton, the narration synonymous with the franchise. This time, “Blood & Money” opens with:
“In the criminal justice system, detectives and prosecutors face daunting challenges. When money is the motive for murder, these men and women dedicate their lives to law and order.
These are their true stories.” Dun Dun.
“The initial concept was to do ‘Law & Order,’ but obviously that brand is so iconic that we had to deliver something to Dick that he would be proud to put all [of] those elements in,” said Lipsitz. “We really spent a lot of time on the first cut, much more so than we would have normally, to get it into a place that we could show to Dick, to say, ‘Does this live up to the ‘Law & Order’ brand?’”
Lipsitz called the process “nerve-wracking,” but thankfully, Wolf loved the idea.
Cutforth said that without the familiar voiceover, the sound effects, and the place cards over black, it might not have been evident to viewers that they’d see the signature L&O format.
“That’s part of the promise to the audience; those storytelling rhythms of ‘Law & Order,’ hopefully replicated in ‘Blood & Money,’” said Cutforth.
Cutforth and Lipsitz – long-time business partners who’d previously worked on Bravo’s “Top Chef” and “Project Runway” – explained they also previously worked with Wolf on Oxygen’s “Cold Justice,” now in its sixth season. Referring to Wolf as a “force of nature” with an “incredible sense of storytelling,” Cutforth said working with Wolf once again for the new series was an incredible experience.
“He’s able to really distill what will really work on television, about telling a crime story at almost a forensic level in terms of where the beats of the story should hit and those kinds of things,” said Cutforth. “His insight is incredible.”
“Blood & Money” comes with the action, relentlessness, and twist and turns everyone loves about Wolf’s pioneering series, this time, adding insights by loved ones whose lives were forever changed by the case.
Watch new episodes of “Blood & Money” Saturdays at 9/8c on Oxygen.