Duchess Street Productions, part of the Anthology Group, has picked up the rights to Mal Peet’s cult classic The Murdstone Trilogy and is also developing Jonathan Coe’s The House of Sleep.

Mike Poulton will adapt The Murdstone Trilogy, a comedy about book prizes, chat shows, literary festivals and the fantasy industry inspired by Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones.

Mike Poulton says, “To adapt the late great Mal Peet’s brilliant black comedy – a hilarious satire on celebrity culture and our current obsession with ‘Phantasy’ literature and film – was an offer I couldn’t refuse. Much darker and funnier than my previous Wolf Hall – even more anarchic than my stage adaptation of Robert Harris’s Imperium, the series defies categorisation… I am passionate about putting something on the screen that’s like nothing that’s ever been screened before – so I hope I’ll do justice to Mal’s extraordinary and apocalyptic vision.”

Also in development is a six-part television adaptation of Jonathan Coe’s The House of Sleep by Jane Eden (The Split, BBC and Fortitude 2, SKY).

Jonathan Coe says, “Jane Eden has produced a brilliant re-imagining of my novel for the modern era. She has taken its original themes – ambiguities around sleep and gender – and infused them with new relevance and new energy, weaving them into a compelling narrative tapestry. I can’t wait to see her unique vision of The House of Sleep brought to the screen.”

Donna Wiffen, CEO of Duchess Street Productions, said, ‘It is a privilege to be working on projects of such high calibre and with two of the most unique and vibrant voices writing today. To be working with Mike Poulton on his first adaptation for television demonstrates Duchess Streets’ commitment to work with the very best writers to create these authored drama series. We could not be more excited to bring these extraordinary stories to the screen.’

Duchess Street is currently in discussion with broadcasters on both adaptations.

Staff Reporter

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