Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan Novels Get TV Adaptation

The Hollywood Reporter revealed Wednesday that Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan Novels’ TV adaptation is heading soon to Italian tubes. Wildside and Fandago Productions will adapt each of the four books — My Brilliant Friend, The Story of a New Name, Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay, and The Story of the Lost Child — into an eight-part miniseries.

Ferrante’s book quartet follows two friends, Elena and Lila, from childhood to middle age. Readers have latched on to the Neapolitan Novels’ sense of time and place: mid-century Naples. Elena and Lila face historic developments — including the women’s rights movement, labor strikes, and the arrival of computers — that complicate their own tangled lives.

Fandango has been involved with the My Brilliant Friend TV adaptation for two years. Wildside’s involvement appears to be more recent, however. The FreemantleMedia-owned production company is currently working with HBO and others to produce The Young Pope: an eight-part miniseries starring Jude Law as a fictional pontiff, Pius XIII.

The most interesting thing about The Hollywood Reporter‘s announcement is this: “Ferrante, who publishes under a pseudonym, will be involved throughout the project.” I must ask you not to scream.

Ferrante is known for her reclusive nature. She has been more “public” in recent days, however. Last year, she gave her first in-person interview to The Paris Review, and a 1991 letter to her publisher surfaced. Still, no one really knows who she is. In fact, for all we know, she could be a burly guy named Giacomo.

That’s what makes the news of Ferrante’s involvement so exciting. Fans might finally be able to catch a glimpse of their beloved author, unmasked. Does this mean we’ll see the end of Ferrante’s anonymity? Only time will tell.