“Catastrophe’s” Sharon Horgan and “Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown” writer Lorna Martin have teamed for a TV series based on the book about the fraught lives of a group of career women in their 30s. “Women on the Verge” will go out on UKTV channel W and Irish free-to-air broadcaster RTE.
Horgan will star as an enigmatic therapist in the six-parter, which will be made by her production banner, Merman, alongside House Productions, which was set up by former Film 4 boss Tessa Ross and former Working Title TV boss Juliette Howell.
Kerry Condon (“Better Call Saul”), Nina Sosnaya (“Marcella”), and Eileen Walsh (“Catastrophe”) will star alongside Horgan as trio of 30-something friends.
Martin’s “Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown” was based on her “Conversations With My Therapist” column in lifestyle magazine Grazia. It is not related to the 1998 Pedro Almodovar film “Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.” Horgan picked up the project in 2011 and along with Martin has worked up the half-hour comedy.
The series will be set in Dublin and tell the darkly comic tale of the three career-driven friends as they attempt to deal with the fact that, while their peers seem to be increasingly in control of their lives, theirs seem to be moving in the opposite direction.
Horgan plays psychotherapist Dr. F. and Condon is Laura, an investigative journalist who has been sleeping with her boss. Sosnaya is Katie, who is divorced and single, and Walsh plays Alison, who has recently gotten back with her ex and is trying for a baby.
“The show is a love letter to women who haven’t ticked all the boxes and whose lives are a bit messier and more complicated than they ever thought they’d be,” Martin said.
It is a significant commission for UKTV drama channel W, and its second original after Anna Paquin series “Flack,” which is in production. Channel director Adam Collings said: “Taking the gloss of ‘Sex and the City,’ combined with the brutal honesty of ‘Girls,’ this is a project unlike anything else on British TV.”
Horgan, who is behind “Catastrophe” and “Divorce,” founded Merman with Clelia Mountford, and they have a first-look deal with Amazon. The pair said in a statement: “We were huge fans of Lorna’s book ‘Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown’ that told her personal story so compellingly and honestly. We are very happy that we’re finally getting to bring her story to the screen and destroy whatever privacy she has left.”
Sky Vision is selling “Women on the Verge” internationally. It bows later this year.