The television series Lie to Me, based on the work of Paul Ekman, aired on the FOX network from 2009 to 2011. It ran for three seasons with a total of forty-eight episodes, and has aired in over 60 countries worldwide. Ekman served as a scientific consultant for the show, analyzing and critiquing each episode’s script.
In the show, Dr. Cal Lightman (the actor Tim Roth) and his colleagues in The Lightman Group provide a professional deception-detection service to government agencies, corporations, and individuals. The team displays extensive knowledge of micro expressions and the Facial Action Coding System while solving cases.
Making of Lie to Me
Writer/Director Sam Baum spent a year in research and development studying Ekman’s work and meeting with him on numerous occasions before creating the show. He invited Dr. Ekman to be a scientific consultant in the production of the show. The show aired on FOX on January 21, 2009. The series won a People’s Choice Award for Favorite TV Crime Drama in 2011.
The Truth About Lie to Me: Separating the Facts from the Fiction
To aid viewers in distinguishing what was science-based and what was invented for entertainment in each show, Dr. Ekman critiqued each episode. The entries appeared on FOX’s website and are now available here.
Facts and Fiction: The Ekman Group vs. The Lightman Group
Samuel Baum, Dr. Paul Ekman, and Erika Rosenberg on Micro Expressions