The New York Times

Elena Ferrante Novels Destined for Television Series

A television adaptation of Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels made a leap forward this week when the Italian producer Wildside signed on with Italy’s Fandango Productions to co-produce a 32-part series with the involvement of the pseudonymous Italian author, according to the producers.

The quartet of novels, which were published between 2012 and 2014 and have gained a devoted following, trace the friendship of two women, Elena and Lila, from their childhoods in the poverty of postwar Naples through their entire lives, against the backdrop of Italian history. The series will be filmed in Italy, in Italian.

News of the series on Tuesday sent the Twittersphere into high gear. The Neapolitan novels have become a cult success for their small Italian publisher, Europa Editions.

Domenico Procacci, the chief executive of Fandango, a leading Italian production outfit, said the television project had been in the works for two years. “We’ve seen the potential of this project grow day by day,” Mr. Procacci said in a statement. “I’m confident that together with Wildside we can realize something great, very respectful of Ferrante’s work and our Italian culture and, at the same time, with real international appeal.”

Italian media reported last year that the Italian novelist and screenwriter Francesco Piccolo was leading a team of screenwriters.

Fandango is also among the producers of “Gomorrah,” based on Roberto Saviano’s book on the Neapolitan mafia. Wildside is also producing Paolo Sorrentino’s “The Young Pope,” an eight-part series in which Jude Law stars as the first American pope. A joint production with Sky, HBO, Canal+ and Haut et Court TV, it is scheduled to air this fall.

On Tuesday, Wildside also announced that it had secured the rights to the French writer Emmanuel Carrère’s “Limonov,” a biographical novel about the self-described Johnny Rotten of Soviet dissident writers. The book was a best seller across Europe. Variety reported that Mr. Carrère and the director Pawel Pawlikowski, who won an Academy Award for “Ida,” will be involved in the writing.