A Model Murder: Is the Lifetime Thriller Inspired by a True Story?

Directed by Amy Barrett, Lifetime’s ‘A Model Murder’ is a mystery thriller that focuses on an internet model named Kara Woods who is about to get her acting career launched. Being one of the most successful models on a fan site, Kara not only has to deal with the fame that comes along with it but also a few negative consequences, such as stalking.

Soon, Kara becomes the recipient of several disturbing texts from one of her fans, who turns into her stalker. Scared for her safety, she reaches out to a security influencer named Cody Valentine. Things get even worse for her when the stalker starts to follow her in real life and shows up in person. Featuring Sara Ball, Austin Valli, Molly Gibson, Ben VanderMey, and Jean Charles, the film consists of certain realistic aspects that raise questions about its authenticity.

A Model Murder is Not Based on a True Story

Instances of celebrities getting stalked are quite common in real life, but ‘A Model Murder’ is primarily fictional, with some aspects within the narrative that may resemble actual events. In recent times, you might have heard of many cases where some world-famous celebrities, including actresses, were the victims of stalking. In early January 2024, an El Paso man named Daniel John Valtier posted about being married to Shakira and having a close relationship with her children as well. He took things further when he flew to Miami to show up at Shakira’s residence after midnight on January 8, 2024. Soon enough, he was arrested and charged with stalking.

Moreover, in a more dreary case of a model getting into trouble, a model named Maleesa Mooney was found stuffed in the refrigerator of her house in downtown Los Angeles. Her cause of death was reported to be blunt-force trauma. At the time of her murder, 41-year-old Magnus Daniel Humphrey had been staying at her place, and it was he who was charged with murder and torture. Thus, there are enough cases in reality, from which the two screenwriters — Jeffrey Schenck and Peter Sullivan — derived inspiration.

Even on-screen, similar stalking cases have been highlighted in various film and TV projects, including the 2022 thriller ‘Stalker.’ Helmed by Bobby Yan, the narrative acquaints us with a famous Hollywood actress whose life turns upside down with the arrival of an obsessed stalker. As her sister and high school boyfriend attempt to figure out the identity of the person responsible for stalking her, the actress must stay on her toes and keep herself protected. Starring Meta Golding, Christian Keyes, Tationna Bosier, and Kalece Harrison, the movie is a gripping tale that shares several similarities with ‘A Model Murder,’ which might seem like a true story but is far from it.

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