BBC snaps up JK's new book: Casual Vacancy set to become multi-million pound series broadcast in 2014
BBC1 will adapt The Casual Vacancy into a TV seriesExpected to be broadcast in 2014The book was released only in SeptemberIt has already sold more than one million copies
01:23 GMT, 4 December 2012
Her children’s novels were cinematic blockbusters but JK Rowling has decided her first book for adults will be made in to a TV series.
BBC1 will adapt The Casual Vacancy into a multi-million pound series, expected to be broadcast in 2014.
The tome, which lays bare the darker side of life in a seemingly idyllic English village, was only released in September but has already sold more than one million copies.
TV time: JK Rowling's first book for adults, The Casual Vacancy, will be adapted by BBC1 into a multi-million pound series, expected to be broadcast in 2014
Miss Rowling said she believed the novel was ideal for the small screen and will “collaborate closely” with the BBC on the project.
She said: ‘I always felt that, if it were to be adapted, this novel was best suited to television and I think the BBC is the perfect home. I’m thrilled that the BBC has commissioned The Casual Vacancy.’
The series is being made by the production arm of her agent Neil Blair, who runs literary firm The Blair Partnership.
It is understood BBC1 controller Danny Cohen has been in negotiations with Blair to secure the book for the corporation.
Suited to TV: Miss Rowling said if adapted she always thought that the BBC was the 'perfect home'
The length of the series has yet to be confirmed but high quality drama traditionally costs in excess of 700,000 an hour in the UK.
The Casual Vacancy is set in Pagford, a quintessentially British village, depicts a Britain at war and featuring episodes of rape, racism, and drug use.
Danny Cohen said: ‘J.K. Rowling’s story-telling is of course peerless in its popularity, and I am looking forward to collaborating with her. This project highlights the ability of modern television to attract the world’s biggest talent and most exciting creative ideas
The Casual Vacancy sold 125,000 copies in its first week on the market, becoming the fastest-selling hardback in the UK for three years and the second biggest seller since records began in 1998.
But, it had a mixed response from critics when it was first released in September.
The Guardian said it was “unadventurous” with a “righteous social message”, while The Times said Miss Rowling had a “sharp eye for vivid detail”.
Daily Mail writer Jan Moir described it as: ‘500 pages of relentless socialist manifesto, masquerading as literature, crammed down your throat.’
Industry insiders estimate her deal to write books for adults with publishers Little Brown is worth more than 5million.
Miss Rowling is estimated to be worth in excess 530million following the success of Harry Potter.