Romola Garai is starring in the BBC adaptation of Jessie Burton’s “genre-bending” debut The Miniaturist.
Filming has begun and is taking place in both Holland and the UK, for broadcast later this year.
The “period thriller”, which is set in 1686 Amsterdam, is being made for the BBC by independent drama company The Forge and is co-produced with Masterpiece, the drama strand on US public service broadcasting network PBS. It has been adapted by John Brownlow and directed by Guillem Morales with Gethin Scourfield as the producer.
Garai (previously seen in "The Hour" and "Atonement") will play Marin, the “cold” sister of wealthy merchant, Johannes Brandt. She said: “I'm so happy to be part of this superb adaptation of Jessie Burton's exquisite, genre bending novel The Miniaturist. Marin is a character with an extraordinary journey of true complexity and depth. I am also truly honoured to be working alongside such an extraordinary cast and creative team on bringing this moving and iconic story to life.”
Also starring are Anya Taylor-Joy ("Split", "The Witch"), Alex Hassell ("Suburbicon", "Cold Mountain"), alongside Paapa Essiedu ("A Midsummer Night’s Dream", "Utopia"), Hayley Squires ("I, Daniel Blake", "Southcliffe") and Emily Berrington ("Humans", "The Inbetweeners 2").
Burton said: “This is an adventure for my book I never dreamed possible, and I’m so happy that The Miniaturist is in such capable and creative hands. The assembled cast is perfect to the vision I had in my mind’s eye in every way, and I know they’ll make magic. Kate Sinclair [The Forge's executive producer] has created an exciting and powerful framework for the story to be told – and, quite simply, I cannot wait to see it on the screen.”
The Miniaturist was published by Picador in July 2014. It was the winner of both the Waterstones Book of the Year award 2014 and the Specsavers Book of the Year award 2014. Across all editions the title has sold 489,471 copies for £3.2m. It also spent four weeks at number one in January 2015. Across all editions the title has sold 489,471 copies for £3.2m. It also spent four weeks at number one in January 2015.
Francesca Main, Picador publishing director, said: “In her sensational debut novel, Jessie Burton created a richly atmospheric world and a cast of unforgettable characters. It's been thrilling to see readers in their millions fall in love with it and I can't wait to see how this incredible cast and crew bring it to life on screen.”
Burton’s agent, Juliet Mushens, co-founder of CaskieMushens, said: “The Miniaturist is a book which captured the imagination of hundreds of thousands of people all over the world. To see it adapted, and brought in to the homes of even more, is an incredibly exciting moment for me.”