'Irish Bridget Jones' gets film deal with Element

'Irish Bridget Jones' gets film deal with Element

The “Irish Bridget Jones” by journalists Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen will be adapted for film by Element Pictures.

Oh My God, What a Complete Aisling was published by Gill Books in Ireland in August and went on to the number-one bestselling adult fiction title in the country for 2017. It was snapped up at auction by Michael Joseph last month while Irish rights to the series’ next two books recently commanded a six-figure sum from Gill Books.

The deal for film rights was brokered by Luke Speed at Curtis Brown Group on behalf of Sheila Crowley and Abbie Greaves of Curtis Brown Group, and Mark Byrne for Element Pictures. The company has developed films such as “Room” and “The Lobster”.

Long-time friends McLysaght and Breen will also write the screenplay for the project. The story follows 28-year-old Aisling and an ill-fated holiday in Tenerife with her boyfriend, which leads to a break-up. It has been hailed as Ireland's answer to Bridget Jones and was so successful it had to be reprinted by Gill Books.

The series sprang from a joke McLysaght and Breen shared on Facebook. They said: “We are so delighted to be working with Element Pictures to bring Aisling to the big screen.

“We’ve known this character for ten years so to be given the opportunity to take her from the pages of our beloved book and transform her into a walking, talking, caring (and judging, let’s be honest) girl in front of a camera is beyond our wildest dreams. We can’t wait to start.”

Element Pictures producer Rory Gilmartin said: “We couldn’t be more excited at the thought of working with Emer and Sarah to bring Aisling into cinemas. The huge success of this debut book is a testament to the strength of their writing – so funny and yet so full of heart.”

He will produce along with Ed Guiney, with Chelsea Morgan Hoffmann heading up development for the production company. Element is run by Guiney and Andrew Lowe, with offices in Dublin and London, and works across production, distribution, and exhibition.