Is Lifetime’s The Boarding School Murders Inspired by a True Story?

Under the direction of Alexandre Carrière, Hannah Galway features as a young foster girl named Frankie in Lifetime’s ‘The Boarding School Murders,’ a crime thriller movie. The plot revolves around Frankie, leading a less-than-pleasant life in a foster care house, who receives the opportunity of a lifetime to finally get away from there by attending an exclusive Swiss boarding school. The new chapter in the life of Frankie soon turns bloody when one of her classmates is found dead.

When it is discovered that the victim was murdered, almost everyone at the boarding school is quick to point their fingers at Frankie. Alongside Hannah, the film also consists of other talented actors, such as Nicole Farrugia, Christina Cox, Ksenia Daniela Kharlamova, Xavier Sotelo, Katia Edith Wood, and Eve Edwards. Mysterious murders, foster care houses, and boarding schools are all themes and elements that are not unheard of in real life, giving rise to questions regarding the authenticity of the tale explored in ‘The Boarding School Murders.’

Is The Boarding School Murders a True Story?

No, ‘The Boarding School Murders’ is not based on a true story. Instead, the credit for the intriguing storyline must be given to the two screenwriters — Richard Pierce (known for ‘Abducted on a Prom Night,’ ‘Student Seduction,’ and ‘Killer Profile’) and Jason Byers (known for ‘Bad Nanny,’ ‘Open Marriage,’ and ‘Husband, Wife, and Their Lover‘). Given their experience in writing thrillers, the duo supposedly combined their excellent penmanship and creative minds to conjure up the gripping yet seemingly realistic screenplay for the Lifetime thriller.

In real life, murders have been committed in the unlikeliest of places, including boarding schools, which is one of the primary reasons why many of you might find the movie a bit authentic. For instance, in June 2023, a 16-year-old boy was accused of trying to murder two of his boarding school pupils and housemaster. After attacking with a hammer, the accused allegedly caused serious injuries to all three of his victims. Although the accused has denied attempting to murder them, the court has yet to pass the final verdict.

Moreover, it is also natural for you to find the tale of ‘The Boarding School Murders’ familiar as this is not the first time themes of murder and boarding school have been explored in the fictional world. Take Rebecca Makkai’s novel ‘I Have Some Questions for You’ for example; it follows a film professor and podcaster named Bodie who revisits a case from her past when she visits her alma mater to teach a course on podcasting. About two decades ago, Bodie was roommates with Thalia at their New Hampshire boarding school as the latter was found murdered in the school’s swimming pool.

As the internet begins suggesting that the man convicted of the crime might be innocent after all, with the real killer still out there. So, when Bodie returns to the campus, she gets sucked right into the 1995 case again as she is forced to revisit her past demons as well. Thus, with so many similar storylines and elements between the novel and the Lifetime film, one might find them familiar. All in all, we can conclude that despite having parallels with reality, ‘The Boarding School Murders’ is not rooted in reality.

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