An adaptation of the forthcoming novel by “Brick Lane” author Monica Ali is in the works at the BBC, Variety can reveal.
Sources indicate that All3Media-owned production company New Pictures is in early development on “Love Marriage” with the corporation. The book is set to be published in February by Virago Press in the U.K. and Scribner in the U.S. Ali will be adapting the book for TV herself.
Ali’s debut Man Booker Prize-nominated 2003 novel “Brick Lane,” which is named after the London neighborhood at the heart of the city’s Bangladeshi community, was made into a 2007 film (pictured) directed by Sarah Gavron and produced by Film4 and Ruby Pictures. The movie, written by Abi Morgan and Laura Jones, premiered at Telluride.
“Love Marriage” is centred on young doctor Yasmin Ghorami, who is engaged to fellow doctor Joe Sangster. But as their wedding day draws closer and Yasmin’s parents get to know Joe’s firebrand feminist mother, both families must confront long-held secrets, lies and betrayals. Yasmin is also forced to question what a “love marriage” — as opposed to the arranged marriages that are still very much the norm in South Asian culture — actually means.
An official description for the project from U.K. agency Curtis Brown, which represents Ali, reads: “Love Marriage” is a story about who we are and how we love in today’s Britain — with all the complications and contradictions of life, desire, marriage and family. What starts as a captivating social comedy develops into a heart-breaking and gripping story of two cultures, two families and two people trying to understand one another.
Production outfit New Pictures, which is adapting the book, is headed up by Charlie Pattinson, Willow Grylls, Elaine Pyke, and Richard Nelson. The company’s credits include Sky and HBO drama “Catherine the Great,” starring Helen Mirren, along with BBC and Starz drama “The Missing,” BBC and Netflix thriller “Requiem” and Channel 4 and WGBH’s “Indian Summers.”
The company picked up television rights earlier this year from Nick Marston and Katie Battcock at Curtis Brown.
The BBC declined to comment for this story.