BBC Three to adapt Sally Rooney’s Conversations with Friends
Staff Reporter | On 25, Feb 2020
With BBC Three set to debut its adaptation of Sally Rooney’s Normal People this spring, the online channel has announced it’s already at work on bringing the author’s other hit novel, Conversations with Friends, to the screen.
Rooney’s 2017 debut is a sharply intelligent story set in Dublin about two college students Frances and Bobbi, and the strange, unexpected connection they forge with a married couple, Melissa and Nick.
Following her work on Normal People, Alice Birch will be returning to write a number of episodes of Conversations with Friends, with further writers to be announced. The lead director will be Oscar-nominated Irish film director Lenny Abrahamson, who also helmed Normal People, along with Hettie McDonald. Completing the reunion, the new series will again be produced by Element Pictures.
Rooney says: “I am so pleased to be working with the team at Element, Lenny Abrahamson and the BBC to produce an adaptation of Conversations with Friends. I’m confident we’re going to find fresh and interesting ways of dramatising the novel’s dynamics, and I’m excited to watch the process take shape.”
Abrahamson says: “I love Conversations with Friends, its depth, humour and freshness, and it’s an honour to be involved in bringing it to the screen. I’m particularly happy that my connection to Sally and her work is set to continue. Making Normal People has been a singular pleasure and I’m excited to be working with the same brilliant team again.”
Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama, says: “We are all addicted to Sally Rooney’s writing and will plunder her literary canon as long as she is writing. And so, on the back of the taut and tangled Normal People we are delighted that Sally has entrusted us, and the wonderfully talented people at Element Pictures, with her debut novel Conversations with Friends. To top it all Lenny Abrahamson has agreed to continue his association with Sally to direct.”
The 12-part half-hour drama will be executive produced by Ed Guiney, Andrew Lowe, Emma Norton, Lenny Abrahamson and Sally Rooney, plus Rose Garnett and Tommy Bulfin for the BBC.
Filming dates and casting will be announced in due course.