Narcos: Mexico showrunner is creating an 8-episode drama for Netflix on the opioid crisis

Netflix limited series Painkiller will be written by Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster and directed by Peter Berg

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 06:  Eric Newman attends the

It seems that Narcos: Mexico showrunner Eric Newman hasn’t had enough of drug dramas just yet, with reports suggesting he will executive produce a new Netflix show based on the opioid crisis.


Painkiller, which will consist of eight episodes, is being written by A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood scribes Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster, with Peter Berg (Deepwater Horizon) set to direct and award-winning documentarian Alex Gibney also serving as an executive producer.

According to Variety, Patrick Radden Keefe, the writer of the New Yorker piece “The Family That Built An Empire of Pain,” and Barry Meier, author of the book “Pain Killer: An Empire of Deceit and the Origin of America’s Opioid Epidemic” are both on hand to serve as consultants.

Newman said, “A tragedy decades in the making, the opioid crisis has become one of the most devastating public health crises of our time.

“Unlike other drug epidemics, born from underground manufacturing and covert smuggling, this epidemic began by prescription – dispensed by doctors, approved by government regulators, and promoted by a family-owned pharmaceutical giant that made billions while betraying the trust of patients and the public.

“I’m grateful to Micah & Noah, and Alex for bringing this story to me. Noah and Micah’s narrative of how it happened, based on the spectacular reporting of Patrick Radden Keefe and Barry Meier, is heartbreaking and terrifying.

“I’m honoured to be working with the great Alex Gibney and I’m thrilled that Peter Berg is coming on to direct it.”

Berg added, “I am really charged to be a part of such an in depth exploration of the genesis of the opioid travesty.


“Companies that profit off of death and addiction are fair game to me when it comes to illuminating the realities of how they go about their business.”