Oxygen Insider Exclusive!

Create a free profile to get unlimited access to exclusive videos, breaking news, sweepstakes, and more!

Sign Up for Free to View
Crime News Family Crimes

Chris Watts Is Getting A Lifetime Movie After Killing His Wife And Kids With His Bare Hands

Lifetime's "The Chris Watts Story" will star Sean Kleier as the father who murdered his young family and Ashley Williams as his pregnant wife, Shanann.

By Becca van Sambeck

Following in the grand tradition of Casey Anthony, the Menendez brothers, and the Craigslist Killer, an object of true crime fascination is getting the Lifetime movie treatment. Chris Watts, the Colorado man who tearfully lied on television, pleading for the pregnant wife he murdered with his bare hands to come home, will be the focus of an upcoming television movie.

In August 2018, Shannan Watts, who was 15 weeks pregnant, and her two daughters, 4-year-old Bella and 3-year-old Celeste, went missing. After their bodies soon turned up in an oil field where Chris' company had worked, Chris was arrested, despite his outlandish claims that he only murdered his wife because she killed their daughters. He eventually confessed to strangling them all to death, and was sentenced in November 2018 to life in prison.

Lifetime's film, which has the working title "The Chris Watts Story," will focus on the months before the family murder happened to "piec[e] together the Colorado dad’s possible motives," according to PEOPLE. 

Sean Kleier ("Odd Mom Out;" "Happyish") will play Chris, Ashley Williams ("How I Met Your Mother") will play the doomed Shanann, and Brooke Smith will also star as an FBI agent.

The Lifetime movie will premiere some time in 2020.

Chris has been moved into a maximum security prison in Wisconsin to serve out his five consecutive life sentences. There, he allegedly claims to have found religion and keeps a photo of the family he murdered in cold blood nearby.