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Watch the heart-pounding first trailer for Amazon Prime Video s YA drama Panic - Entertainment Weekly News

Watch the heart-pounding first trailer for Amazon Prime Video s YA drama  Panic  - Entertainment Weekly News
Entertainment
EW has your exclusive first look at Amazon Prime Video s new YA series, adapted from Lauren Oliver s bestselling novel about graduating seniors who participate in a high-stakes, life-or-death game of challenges for prize money that they see is the only way out of their small town. But this year, the rules have changed — the pot of money is larger than ever and the game has become even more dangerous. As the players come face-to-face with their deepest, darkest fears, they ll be forced to decide how much they are willing to risk in order to win.

The series follows Heather Nill (Olivia Welch), who never intended to play the dangerous game — especially after it resulted in two teens dying the year prior. But when circumstances at home turn dire, she sees the game as her only option, and her nothing-to-lose attitude may be just what she needs to win the whole thing. But she s playing against her best friend Natalie Williams (Jessica Sula), the mysterious new guy Dodge Mason (Mike Faist), and the town s resident psychopath Ray Hall (Ray Nicholson), among many other seniors, so the competition is fierce. And with her best friend Bishop Mason (Camron Jones) begging her to stop, and Sheriff Cortez (Enrique Murciano) and the rest of the police on the hunt to destroy the game that s killing the town s teens, Heather has a long road ahead of her if she wants to win the whole thing.

panic (water marked)

Credit: Matt Lankes/Amazon Studios

"It s about conquering fears but also being wrong about which fears that you have to conquer," Oliver tells EW. "And also about being wrong in some way about how to conquer those fears. It seems, in some ways, courageous to play the game, but it becomes very clear that the game is a false trap, and the things that people are afraid of are the ones that can t be placed into a challenge. And in a way even being willing to play the game is representative of a very, very deep terror that all of the kids have in different ways about how much their lives are worth."

As the author of the novel, Oliver had the freedom to adapt Panic however she wanted, and the biggest change from page to screen came in the form of the book s "villain" Ray Hall.

panic (water marked)

Credit: Matt Lankes/Amazon Studios

There are other changes to the story that will surprise readers along the way, but Ray s character development and how it affects the other character s journeys — especially Heather s — will be the biggest shock. "The nice thing about adapting your own work is that you re allowed to take liberties other people might have been afraid to," Oliver says. "It was really important to me that the theme and the tone and the meaning be preserved, and not that any particular element itself stayed the same."
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