Neapolitan Novels to become TV series

(ANSA) – Rome, February 10 – Elena Ferrante’s internationally acclaimed Neapolitan Novels will be adapted into a television series for the international market co-produced by Italian production companies Fandango and Wildside.
The idea is for each of the novels to be adapted into an eight-part series, for a reported 32 episodes over four seasons.
The last of the four, titled The Story of the Lost Child, was on the The New York Times list of top 10 novels of 2015.
Ferrante – a pseudonym for a writer who has never revealed her identity – is reportedly co-writing the script along with Italian author Francesco Piccolo.
The books tell about the lifelong friendship between two girls from a poor, tough Naples neighborhood where girls are not supposed to aspire to an education.
The story begins in the 1950s and evolves across six decades as one of the two heroines, named Elena, overcomes the odds, gets a university degree, becomes a writer and moves to Florence while Lila drops out of school, marries an abusive man at 16, and never leaves the old neighborhood.
Their saga is an intertwining counterpoint between their two natures, with Elena struggling to overcome her humble roots and come into her own as an intellectual in a male-dominated world while Lila carries on a battle of her own while never stepping outside the confines of the crime-ridden, corrupt and tight-knit enclave they both call home.
In spite of having apparently emancipated herself from the old neighborhood and its crooked, conniving ways, Elena can never entirely detach herself and needs Lila’s mirroring gaze and intellect to give her the vital affirmation she needs.
Ferrante’s four-part novel explores the pair’s complex relationship from childhood to old age, against the changing backdrop of postwar Italy as it evolves into the 21st century.
The series to launch in the fall will reportedly air on HBO in the United States, on Sky TV in Italy, Germany, and the UK, and on Canal+ in France.
Domenico Procacci’s Fandango owns the literary rights, and Wildside specializes in literary adaptations for the screen – also in its pipeline are screen versions of French author Emmanuel Carrère’s best-selling biography Limonov and of leading Italian novelist Niccolò Ammaniti’s Anna.