Pages Navigation Menu

"No matter where you go, there you are."


Neil Gaiman and Akiva Goldsman are working on a new adaptation of Gormenghast

FremantleMedia North America have got the rights to Mervyn Peake’s Gormenghast series with Neil Gaiman and Akiva Goldsman (A Beautiful Mind) lined up to adapt for television.

According to Deadline, Gaiman will be a non-writing executive producer on the project alongside Oscar-winning writer Goldsman.

Gormenghast is the vast, crumbling castle to which the seventy-seventh Earl, Titus Groan, is lord and heir. Titus is expected to rule this gothic labyrinth of turrets and dungeons (and his eccentric and wayward subjects) according to strict age-old rituals, but things are changing in the castle. Titus must contend with treachery, manipulation and murder as well as his own longing for a life beyond the castle walls.

Gaiman said “There is nothing in literature like Mervyn Peake’s remarkable Gormenghast novels. They were crafted by a master, who was also an artist, and they take us to an ancient castle as big as a city, with heroes and villains and people larger than life that are impossible to forget. There is a reason why there were two trilogies that lovers of the fantasy genre embraced in the Sixties: Lord of the Rings, and the Gormenghast books. It’s an honor to have been given the opportunity to help shepherd Peake’s brilliant and singular vision to the screen.”

Dante Di Loreto, President of Scripted Entertainment at FremantleMedia North America, added, “Nothing combines a dark atmosphere with humor and intrigue the way that Gormenghast does. It’s one of the most eccentric and vividly imagined universes ever created. We’re excited to continue our relationship with Neil and the producing team assembled for this project is ideal to explore the series’ perfect mix of humor, pathos, and tragedy.”

Fabian Peake, Peake’s son and the executor of his estate, added, “We are tremendously excited by the prospect of seeing the Gormenghast books realized for television. This venture presents a unique opportunity to explore the imagination of a multi-faceted artist.”

The series began with Titus Groan in 1946, followed by Gormenghast in 1950 and Titus Alone in 1959. Peake, who died in 1968, was working on a fourth novel entitled Titus Awakes. His widow, the late British painter, sculptor, and writer Maeve Gilmore, completed a version of Titus Awakes in the 1970s. The Peake family rediscovered the work in 2009, and Overlook Press published it as Titus Awakes: The Lost Book of Gormenghast in June 2011 to coincide with the 100th anniversary of Peake’s birth. 

Gaiman and Goldman’s Gormenghast adaptation follows after the BBC turned Titus Groan and Gormenghast into a four-part series in 2000. The project starred Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Christopher Lee.

Academy Award-winning Barry Spikings (The Deer Hunter) will also serve as an executive producer, along with David Stern (Howards End).

Image by Ian Miller.

Next PostPrevious Post


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.