'Anna Karenina' to get small screen adaptation
Leo Tolstoy's "Anna Karenina" is getting another TV remake, with Gwyneth Hughes attached as writer. "The Girl" scribe Hughes will develop an adaptation of the 1878 novel with BBC Studios-backed producer Expectation, reported Deadline.
The project is in the early stages of development. "Anna Karenina" is the story of the eponymous lead, who has an affair with a dashing cavalry officer that scandalises Saint Petersburg social circles.
The duo initially flee to Italy before returning to Russia, where their lives further unravel. The story has been adapted numerous times, with its most notable recent remake being Keira Knightley-led 2012 film, which was directed by Joe Wright.
Hughes' recent writing credits include adapting William Makepeace Thackeray's "Vanity Fair" into a seven-part Olivia Cooke-fronted series for ITV and Amazon. She is currently working on "Honour", a two-part drama starring Keeley Hawes for ITV.
Many authors consider Anna Karenina the greatest work of literature ever written, and Tolstoy himself called it his first true novel. It was initially released in serial installments from 1873 to 1877 in the periodical The Russian Messanger.
A complex novel in eight parts, with more than a dozen major characters, it is spread over more than 800 pages (depending on the translation), typically contained in two volumes. It deals with themes of betrayal, faith, family, marriage, Imperial Russian society, desire, and rural vs. city life. The plot centers on an extramarital affair between Anna and dashing cavalry officer Count Alexei Kirillovich Vronsky that scandalizes the social circles of Saint Petersburg and forces the young lovers to flee for Italy in a futile search for happiness. Returning to Russia, their lives further unravel.