BBC One has given the green-light to four literary adaptations, which will form part of the channel’s Classic 20th Century Literature Season.
The four literary works being adapted are JB Priestley’s classic play An Inspector Calls, DH Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover, Laurie Lee’s Cider With Rosie and LP Hartley’s The Go-Between. All four will be adapted into 90 minute one-offs by some of the industry’s top talent including Line of Duty & Critical creator Jed Mercurio and The Musketeers creator Adrian Hodges.
“These four classic novels each represent a real moment in our recent history when Britain was on the cusp of great social and cultural change”, said BBC One Controller Charlotte Moore. “This season of films aims to explore and contextualise the enormous changes in the way men and women lived and behaved in the 20th century. They all tell uniquely intense and personal stories about people living in Britain 100 years ago.”
“Whilst each film will stand as a wonderful treat in its own right, themes about the role of women, class, sexuality and impact of the First World War will ebb and flow across them”, added the BBC’s Controller of Drama Commissioning Ben Stephenson, who commissioned the dramas alongside Charlotte Moore. “I hope that, viewed together, these four masterpieces will present an intelligent and involving picture of what it was like to live in Britain 100 years ago.”
An Inspector Calls is being produced by Drama Republic – the production company behind the upcoming BBC dramas The Honourable Woman and Doctor Foster – and has A Poet In New York helmer Aisling Walsh. Drama Republic’s Greg Brenman will executive produce and called the source material “a timeless masterpiece”, adding that it was “an honour for us to be making this with the BBC.”
Line of Duty‘s Jed Mercurio has adapted Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover. He will also direct the 90 minute film which is a co-production between Sherlock producer Hartswood Films and Serena Cullen Productions. Serena Cullen is producing and Hartswood’s Beryl Vertue will executive produce.
Ben Vanstone has penned the 90 minute adaptation of Laurie Lee’s Cider With Rosie. Origin Pictures is producing the drama which reunites the indie with Jamaica Inn helmer Philipa Lowthorpe “We are so thrilled to be making a new version of Laurie Lee’s timeless classic that has been adapted so masterfully by Ben Vanstone and will be brought to life by the brilliant Philippa Lowthorpe”, said Origin Pictures’ David Thompson and Ed Rubin.
The Musketeers creator Adrian Hodges has adapted LP Hartley’s The Go-Between, which is being produced in-house by BBC Drama Production. Claire Bennett will serve as the producer, while Hodges and Sue Hogg will executive produce. “Adapting The Go-Between has been a real labour of love. It’s a book I’ve admired ever since I read it many years ago, and its subtle power and devastating emotional impact remains undiminished”, Hodges said.