Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

The Great Gatsby is set to return as a television adaption in development, based on F. Scott Fitzgerald classic novel.

It’s reported that A+E and ITV Studios will produce a high-budget TV-series adapted from the classic novel, with Michael Hirst to pen the script.  No network is attached and the plan is top shop the series to various streaming and premium cable outlets. Michael Hirst has written for Elizabeth, The Tudors, Vikings and will be an executive producer for the new mini-series. Michael London from Groundswell Production and great-granddaughter Blake Hazard at Fitzgerald Estate will also produce as a consult. The adaption has been in the works for at least three years with Hirst to scribe. 

“I seem to have lived with Gatsby most of my life, reading it first as a schoolboy, later teaching it at Oxford in the 1970s then re-reading it periodically ever since,” Hirst said. “As the critic Lionel Trilling once wrote: ‘The Great Gatsby is still as fresh as when it first appeared, it has even gained in weight and relevance.’ Today, as America seeks to reinvent itself once again, is the perfect moment to look with new eyes at this timeless story, to explore its famous and iconic characters through the modern lens of gender, race and sexual orientation. Fitzgerald’s profoundly romantic vision does not prevent him examining and exposing the darker underbelly of the American experience, which is why the story speaks to both tragedy and hope, and why it continues to resonate today.”

The new adaptation from Hirst wants to deepen and explore the black community in 1920 and musical subculture. Columbia University’s William B. Ransford Professor of English and comparative literature and African-American studies Farah Jasmine Griffin will also be consulting producers. Griffin wants to dig deeper and discover the characters hidden lives through the modern lens of the American dream and capture Fitzgerald’s timeless vision, at the same time.

“I have long dreamt of a more diverse, inclusive version of Gatsby that better reflects the America we live in, one that might allow us all to see ourselves in Scott’s wildly romantic text,” Hazard said. “Michael brings a deep reverence for Scott’s work to the project, but also a fearlessness about bringing such an iconic story to life in an accessible and fresh way. I’m delighted to be a part of the project.”

A+E Studios President Jossen has also commented on the project at hand.

“There are few stories in the pantheon of American literature that transcend time like The Great Gatsby,” Jossen said. “Along with our partners at ITV Studios America and Groundswell Productions, A+E Studios is privileged to bring this powerful, complex work to life under the watchful eye of the incomparable Michael Hirst and the blessing of Fitzgerald family member Blake Hazard. As evidenced by his series bible, Michael stays true to Fitzgerald’s novel while building on that legacy with a modern vision that will be more reflective of America both then and now, including an enhanced exploration of the female characters. We are currently searching for a director and are excited to bring this out to the market.”

The story about The Great Gatsby has been adapted for the big screen a couple of times; in 1926, 1949, 1975 and in 2013. This would be the first time the story is adapted for television.

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