Dobrev will also serve as an executive producer on the television series alongside the production company Made Up Stories. She will work directly with the company founder, Bruna Papandrea.
No network or streaming service is yet attached to the show.
Woman 99 is a historical thriller novel about a young lady named Charlotte Smith, who is desperate to help her sister Phoebe escape from an asylum. Their parents commit Phoebe to the asylum, but Charlotte doubts that her sister is as insane as her family declares her.
Charlotte infiltrates the facility as an anonymous patient under the name “Woman 99.” While inside, she risks her sanity to try and save Phoebe.
“It’s so important to tell women’s stories written by women with women for women. Unfortunately, history continues to repeat itself, and Woman 99 explores themes of mental illness, societal inequality and injustice that make this cautionary tale feel hauntingly relevant even centuries after the story takes place,” said Dobrev.
As for Papandrea, she expressed her excitement about adapting such a “gripping” novel with “so many elements” she loves, including “a courageous heroine, the mighty bond of sisters and the power of perseverance.”
She added that the show would be “set against a heartbreaking backdrop exploring the historical treatment of women cast off from society.”
Woman 99 will mark Dobrev’s first return to television since her CBS sitcom Fam was canceled after only one season. Before that, she starred in films like Lucky Day, Run This Town, and Then Came You.
Papandrea is an Australian producer who previously worked with Reese Witherspoon in founding the production company Pacific Standard, which is now part of Hello Sunshine.
Papandrea also has an extensive background in creating compelling television series based on books. Previously, she worked on the Emmy Award-winning show Big Little Lies.
She will also serve as a producer on several upcoming projects that are all adapted from novels, including Nine Perfect Strangers, The Undoing, Pieces of Her, and now Woman 99.
Many of Dobrev’s fans took to social media to congratulate her on her next project and express their excitement about seeing her tackling such an intriguing story.
Several Twitter users said they loved her in The Vampire Diaries and could not wait to watch her latest project.
“Ooh! This sounds interesting! Can’t wait to watch! It’ll be nice having @ninadobrev back on TV again :),” tweeted one fan.