Streaming services have mined all kinds of books in their quest for the ultimate prestige drama, and the latest looks set to be Vanity Fair, the satirical novel by William Makepeace Thackeray about English society during the Napoleonic Wars.
Variety reports that Amazon is teaming up with the U.K.’s ITV to turn the 1848 epic into a lavish seven-part drama.
“Vanity Fair feels like the perfect classic to adapt for ITV, and Gwyneth Hughes‘ stunning scripts bring the novel to life in a way that will really connect with a modern audience,” said ITV. “The question was always who would be our perfect Becky Sharp, and that is undoubtedly Olivia Cooke.”
“Olivia who?” you may ask. Olivia Cooke — and don’t expect not to know about her for long. Not only does she have a recurring role in A&E’s Bates Motel in the bag, but she’s also due to star in Steven Spielberg‘s upcoming adaptation of dystopian sci-fi novel Ready Player One alongside Simon Pegg and Mark Rylance.
She’ll play the novel’s plucky heroine Becky Sharp, the poor, orphaned young woman whose determination to rise through the ranks of English society was portrayed by The Night Manager‘s Natasha Little in a 1998 BBC miniseries, and Reese Witherspoon in a 2004 film.
The team behind the new adaptation is promising, too: Mammoth Screen were responsible for both Poldark and Victoria, while producer Julia Stannard made War & Peace. Writing duties fall to Gwyneth Hughes, who recently penned Dark Angel starring Downton Abbey‘s Joanne Froggatt.
The new series is due to start filming this September, so expect it to launch stateside on Amazon in 2018.
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