BBC One has commissioned a series adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s latest novel The Casual Vacancy. The series will be produced by an independent production company operated by Rowling’s agent Neil Blair. Rowling will be involved with the adaptation, while the number and length of episodes will be determined as the project moves through development. The series, which will be executive produced by Rick Senat, is slated to air in 2014.
The Casual Vacancy is Rowling’s first novel outside of the world of Harry Potter and is set in Pagford, a seemingly idyllic English village with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war. Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils… Pagford is not what it first seems.
Speaking of the series adaptation of The Casual Vacancy, J.K. Rowling said: “I’m thrilled that the BBC has commissioned The Casual Vacancy. I always felt that, if it were to be adapted, this novel was best suited to television and I think the BBC is the perfect home.”
BBC One Controller Danny Cohen commented: “It is thrilling to be bringing the work of J.K. Rowling to BBC One audiences. J.K. Rowling’s story-telling is of course peerless in its popularity, and I am looking forward to collaborating with her. This project highlights the ambition and scale of BBC One Drama, as well as the ability of modern television to attract the world’s biggest talent and most exciting creative ideas.”
While Ben Stephenson, Controller of BBC Drama, added: “We are thrilled to bring J.K. Rowling’s extraordinary tapestry of modern Britain to the screen. It’s a book of such richness that through humour, social commentary and above all fantastic characters, says something insightful and entertaining about the country we live in.”