BBC plans to remake the 1981 film adaptation of The French Lieutenant’s Woman, based on John Fowles’ novel, reports Telegraph.
BBC is in talks with a prominent Hollywood studio to adapt the movie into four one-hour episodes. Some reports say that MGM co-president of worldwide television distribution, Gary Marenzi, has said: “We have just got another draft of the script. Now we’ll start to look at casting and where to shoot, it could start later this year.”
If the four-episode miniseries on The French Lieutenant’s Woman is made, it would be the first adaptation of the novel since the 1981 film.
The The French Lieutenant’s Woman miniseries is likely to be shot in America. The French Lieutenant’s Woman movie, starring Meryl Streep and Jeremy Irons, was shot in Lyme Regis in Dorset where the story is set, after the Napoleonic Wars. The movie also stars Hilton McRae, David Warner, Penelope Wilton, and Leo McKern.
John Fowles book, The French Lieutenant’s Woman, was published in 1969.
The book is about Sarah Woodruff who lives a solitary life in the seaside town of Lyme Regis, and is called The French Lieutenant Whore, because she had a short affair with Varguennes, a French sailor. Varguennes goes back to France to a wife, leaving Sarah behind, who is not even aware that Varguennes is married.
While Sarah spends her time near the sea in Lyme Regis, she meets Charles Smithson and his fiance Ernestina Freeman. Sarah tells Charles her story and they become close. John Fowles explores three different endings in the book, revolving around Sarah and Charles.
Fowles died in 2005. His other works include The Collector and The Magus.
The movie was directed by Karel Reisz and adapted by playwright Harold Pinter. The French Lieutenant’s Woman was nominated for five Oscars in the categories of Best Actress in a Leading Role (Meryl Streep), Best Art Direction-Set Decoration (Assheton Gorton, Ann Mollo), Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium.
Meryl Streep won the Bafta award and the Golden Globe for Best Actress for the movie.