BBC released a teaser trailer for “His Dark Materials,” but we don’t have a release date at this time. The adaptation does have an impressive cast behind it, including James McAvoy, Ruth Wilson, and Lin-Manuel Miranda.
You may be familiar with the story, even if you don’t recognize the title. The first book in the series, ‘Northern Lights,’ also went by the name ‘The Golden Compass.’ A movie adaptation was made in 2007 with director Chris Weitz. The film featured Daniel Craig, Eva Green, and Sam Elliott.
Several directors joined in to take on the project, which was co-produced by HBO, BBC, Bad Wolf, and New Line Cinema. Tom Hooper directed the first two episodes, with Dawn Shadforth directing episode three. Otto Bathhurst directed episodes four and five, and Euros Lyn directed the sixth episode. Jamie Childs directing the final two episodes, which are episode seven and episode eight.
Philip Pullman wrote the original works. The first series follows Lyra, a seemingly ordinary but brave young woman from another world. Lyra’s search for a kidnapped friend uncovers a sinister plot involving stolen children and becomes a quest to understand a mysterious phenomenon called Dust. As she journeys through the worlds, including our own, Lyra meets a determined and courageous boy named Will. HBO teased the story adding, “Together they encounter extraordinary beings and dangerous secrets, with the fate of both the living — and the dead — in their hand.”
In the adaptation, James McAvoy will take on the role of Lord Asriel Belacqua. Ruth Wilson is playing Mrs. Coulter, and Lin-Manuel Miranda is playing Lee Scoresby.
Anne-Marie Duff is playing Ma Costa with Clarke Peters playing The Master of Jordan College. Ariyon Bakare is playing Carlo Boreal, with Will Keen playing Father MacPhail.
Ian Gelder has the role of Charles the Librarian, and Georgina Campbell will play Adèle Starminster. Lewin Lloyd is set to play Roger Parslow, with Lucian Msamati playing the role of John Faa.
James Cosmo will play Farder Coram, with Daniel Frogson playing Tony Costa. Tyler Howitt will play Billy Costa, and Ruta Gedmintas is playing Serafina Pekkala.
Mat Fraser will play Raymond van Gerrit, with Geoff Bell as Jack Verhoeven; and Simon Manyonda will be Benjamin de Ruyter.
If you prefer to read books before seeing the adaptation, you can find the three books (Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass) here on Amazon.
HBO and BBC may use the wintry theme of the adaptation as a reason to release the series around the holidays. That’s usually the best time to drop a new show filled with magic, wonder, and big bears. Fans of the original works will just have to wait a little longer to get a firm release date from the networks.