Remember that film, The Golden Compass? Remember how disappointing it was? Well, we have supremely good news for fans of the His Dark Materials trilogy: the books are getting a screen adaptation once again, but this time for television.
The BBC has announced that they will be devising an entirely new drama series, with Philip Pullman – the books’ author – as an executive producer. With the BBC producing extremely high-quality shows in the last few years with epic scopes and production values – from Sherlock through to Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell – this is certain to be the adaptation the franchise deserves, especially after the 2007 film which adapted the first instalment, The Golden Compass (or Northern Lights if you live in the UK). Pullman had this to say on the matter:
‘It’s been a constant source of pleasure to me to see this story adapted to different forms and presented in different media. It’s been a radio play, a stage play, a film, an audiobook, a graphic novel – and now comes this version for television. In recent years we’ve seen how longs tories on television, whether adaptations (Game of Thrones) or original (The Sopranos, The Wire), can reach depths of characterization and heights of suspense by taking the time for events to make their proper impact and for consequences to unravel.’
New Line Cinema will be producing the show, marking the company’s first foray into TV. There’s no clue as to how many episodes the show will have, if there will be a separate series for each book, or even a hint of an air date – but it’s great to know that the parallel universe-hopping story of Lyra and her daemon will have plenty of room to breathe. For fans of this much beloved literary trilogy, this announcement is superb news – if perhaps a little late.