Channel 5 and Acorn TV have ordered Dalgliesh, a new adaptation of the stories by P.D. James. Six episodes have been commissioned for the show’s first season, which is expected to air in 2021. Bertie Carvel (The Pale Horse, Doctor Foster) is attached to star in the title role.
Dalgliesh starts in 1970s England and follows Dalgliesh’s career to present day as he solves unusual murders and reveals buried secrets. Each murder mystery will offer its own unique setting and extraordinary cast. The six episodes will comprise three two-part stories, all of which are based on three of the Dalgiesh novels.
The novels being adapted for the first season are Shroud For A Nightingale, The Black Tower, and A Taste For Death. In Shroud For A Nightingale, the young women of Nightingale House are there to learn to nurse and comfort the sick. When one of the students is horribly, brutally killed it is up to Adam Dalgliesh to unmask a killer who has decided to prescribe murder as the cure for all ills. Set on the Dorset coast, The Black Tower is a dark investigation into a strange home for the disabled where the caring community is not quite as caring as it proports to be.
Lastly, in A Taste For Death, two men lie in a pool of blood at St. Matthews Church Paddington, one is a homeless pensioner, the other a Minister of the Crown, Dalgliesh must dig beneath ugly and dangerous family secrets to bring the murderer to justice. Helen Edmundson is the lead writer, while Jill Robertson is attached to direct. Georgie Fallon is the series producer, while Elaine Pyke is the executive producer. New Pictures is producing. Channel 5 will serve as the UK broadcaster, while Acorn TV will air the series in North America, New Zealand and Australia. All3Media International is handling global sales. Northern Ireland Screen are supporting the production.
“Acorn Media Enterprises is thrilled to work with Channel 5, New Pictures, and all3media international to commission new adaptations of P. D. James beloved Dalgliesh Mysteries”, said Catherine Mackin, Managing Director of Acorn Media Enterprises. “Acorn TV subscribers around the world are sure to love these contemporary adaptations starring Bertie Carvel as the iconic detective.”
“We’re delighted to be working alongside Acorn TV , All 3 Media & New Pictures on our next drama commission”, said Sebastian Cardwell, Channel 5 Deputy Director of Programmes, ViacomCBS Networks UK. “P.D. James was one of Britain’s great crime writers and we’re incredibly excited to be creating new adaptations of her work. ”
While Elaine Pyke, Executive Producer for New Pictures, added: “It’s a great honour to bring these much loved detective mysteries to life for fans of the books but also for new audiences. We are incredibly excited by the talent they are attracting and the opportunity to work with Acorn TV and Channel 5.”