In the trailer for Peacock’s A Friend of the Family, which is based on a true story, FBI Agent Peter Walsh (Austin Stowell) tells the Broberg family to question the intentions of their neighbor, Robert Berchtold (Jake Lacy). “No one thinks that their best friend is a monster,” says Walsh. “But he has all the hallmarks of a psychopathic personality.”
Colin Hanks and Anna Paquin star as Bob and Mary Ann Broberg, a kindhearted suburban family who became great friends with Robert and his wife, Gai (Lio Tipton). Over a few years, Robert manipulated the Brobergs to go against one another other, exploiting their vulnerabilities as a family while driving a wedge between the parents and one of their daughters, Jan (Mckenna Grace). During this time frame, Robert kidnapped Jan multiple times, and sexually assaulted her in the process.
The harrowing true story comes from showrunner Nick Antosca, who created the true crime dramas The Act and Candy. A Friend of the Family also stars Hendrix Yancey as a younger Jan. Patrick Fischler, Philip Ettinger, Ella Jay Basco, and Bree Elrod round out the ensemble.
“This story will make you talk, shout, cry — and it will make you angry. Good,” said producer Jan Broberg in a press release. “Our story is relatable because so many families have direct experience with this sort of abuse.” Jan’s story was the subject of the documentary, Abducted in Plain Sight.
A Friend of the Family premieres on Peacock on October 6 with three episodes at launch and new episodes streaming weekly.
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