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The brilliant friend, what is known about the Ferrante TV series
The brilliant friend, what is known about the Ferrante TV series

The brilliant friend, Elena Ferrante's best-selling novel, becomes a TV series: here's everything we know so far, about actors, plot and release date

The brilliant friend becomes a TV series and now that the production begins to take shape we begin to know the first details on the television transposition of first of the four books by Elena Ferrante, an editorial case not only in Italy but also abroad.

Even Hillary Clinton has admitted that she is a fan of the saga and that she had to stop at the second book to avoid distracting herself from the election campaign for the US presidential elections last year).

A success that could not go unnoticed by the manufacturers, who immediately threw themselves at the writer's feet to obtain the rights.

Here is everything known so far.

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Production and shooting

The project was born from the collaboration between Rai and HBO (the same that produced Sex and the City and Game of Thrones, so to speak).

Filming will begin this summer in Italy (will be set in Naples) and will be performed in Italian.

The broadcast will then remain in Italian (subtitled in English for American audiences)

To direct the series will be Saverio Costanzo, former director of the Italian edition of In Treatment, with the production of Lorenzo Mieli and Mario Gianani for Wildside and Domenico Procacci for Fandango.

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The episodes and the broadcast date

One has not yet been announced broadcast date, although it has already been announced that The Brilliant Friend will be divided into eight episodes and that the agreement has already been signed to go on with the following novels as well, for a total of 32 episodes.

The writer is actively participating in the staging of his work, which had already seen a theatrical transposition last February.

However, his identity remains anonymous even to the director, who he admitted to continue to hear it only via email.

For her part, Ferrante admitted in an interview with the New York Times of not wanting to interfere with the producers' work, but to be happy to be taken into consideration.

«I read the texts and send detailed notes - explains -. I don't know yet if they will take them into account but it is very likely that they will use them later in the latest version of the script ».

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The plot and the fidelity to the book

According to what Procacci said, the series will try to stay true to the novels "In respect of Ferrante's work and Italian culture, and at the same time that it is interesting at an international level".

The writer comments: "As for fidelity to the book, I expect there to be consistent with the needs of the visual story, which uses different tools to achieve the same effects ».

The protagonists are Elena and Raffaella, better known as Lenù and Lila, two friends who grow up in a neighborhood on the outskirts of Naples, between poverty and degradation.

The book narrates the events of the two girls from Elena's point of view, starting from childhood and continuing through adolescence, when their paths seem to diverge.

Lila, in fact, cannot continue school because her parents cannot afford it, while Lenù's will be able to guarantee her an education.

Their lives though they will continue to intertwine, also thanks to theirs sentimental vicissitudes.

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The cast of actors

At the moment it is not yet known who will be part of the series, nor who will play the role of the two protagonists.

Ferrante's hope is that two rookies are chosen: «Child actors portray children as adults imagine they should be. On the other hand, children who are not actors have some chances to break out of the stereotype, especially if the director is able to find the right balance between reality and fiction,”he explained.

And Saverio Costanzo seems to want to follow the advice, given that at the first castings that were held in the Rione Sanità of Naples he was looking for two pairs of girls (a pair of 8 and the other of 15) amateurs.

"Everyone in Naples knows how to act. They have to act to defend themselves. Everyone plays a part every day,”the director told the New York Times.

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The sequel and the other books

The first edition of The brilliant friend it was released in bookstores in 2011, followed the following year by the second volume History of the new surname, in 2013 by History of those who flee and those who remain and finally in 2014 from the last chapter of the tetralogy Story of the lost child.

Books tell a single story that takes place over 50 years.

Although divided, Elena Ferrante has in fact admitted that she always thought of them as a single novel and to have separated them only for reasons of length.

And that's why the first episodes that will be shot this summer have already decided that they will follow another 8 for each book, for a total of 32.

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