1:00pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Hulu Boards 'Normal People' Author's 'Conversations With Friends'
Hulu is doubling down on Normal People author Sally Rooney.
The Disney-owned streamer has boarded Conversations With Friends, the 12-episode, straight-to-series half-hour drama that it will produce in partnership with youth channel BBC Three.
Based on Rooney's debut novel, Conversations With Friends revolves around two Dublin college students who forge an unexpected, strange and sexually charged relationship with an older married couple that results in a complicated pair of love triangles that upend their lives.
"Sally Rooney perfectly and beautifully captures the complicated dynamics of relationships in her stories. After bringing that to life in Normal People to an overwhelmingly positive response, we are honored to do the same with Conversations With Friends," said Hulu vp content Beatrice Springborn. "We are excited to continue our creative partnership with Sally, Element Pictures, Lenny [Abrahamson] and the BBC, which has been a dream collaboration."
Abrahamson will serve as the lead director alongside lead writer Alice Birch. The duo previously collaborated on Rooney's Normal People for Element Pictures and Hulu. Element's Ed Guiney, Andrew Lowe and Emma Norton will exec produce alongside BBC Three's Rose Garnett and Tommy Bulfin. Rooney and Abrahamson will also be credited as exec producers, while Catherine Magee will produce. Endeavor Content handled the U.S. sale to Hulu and will also oversee international sales for the series.
While Hulu (like other streamers) does not release viewership data, Normal People has been a critical and word-of-mouth breakout for the streamer since launching on the service in late April. The series currently has an impressive 89 percent and 94 percent rating among critics and viewers, respectively, on RottenTomatoes.com, while also serving as a launch pad for stars Paul Mescal and Daisy Edgar-Jones.
BBC Three announced plans to adapt Conversations With Friends back in February. The novel was first published in 2017 by Faber & Faber, which won the rights following a competitive bidding war for the title.
"We loved working with Hulu on Normal People — they are an inspiring and very talented team and all of us at Element are delighted to be partnering with them again, alongside our friends at the BBC, on the screen adaptation of Sally Rooney’s incredible first novel, Conversations With Friends," said Guiney.
Conversations With Friends joins a Hulu slate of scripted book-to-screen originals that also includes The Handmaid's Tale, Little Fires Everywhere, Looking for Alaska and, yes, Normal People.