Neil Gaiman and Akiva Goldsman to Executive Produce the Television Drama Series Depicting the Remarkable Groan Dynasty
FremantleMedia North America (FMNA) has won the rights to Mervyn Peake’s gothic fantasy book series, Gormenghast. Hailed as one of the great works of 20th century British literature, Gormenghast has received widespread acclaim and has been translated into more than 20 languages. With numerous companies competing for the project FMNA secured the rights to all five books within the series from literary agent Jonathan Sissons at Peters, Fraser and Dunlop, on behalf of the Peake estate.
Attached to the project are award-winning author Neil Gaiman (American Gods, Norse Mythology, Coraline) and Academy Award-winning writer, producer and director, Akiva Goldsman (A Beautiful Mind, Cinderella Man), who will serve as non-writing executive producers. Academy Award-winning Barry Spikings (The Deer Hunter, Lone Survivor) will also serve as an executive producer, along with David A. Stern (Howards End, The Last Tycoon), who was instrumental in bringing this deal together.
“There is nothing in literature like Mervyn Peake’s remarkable Gormenghast novels,” said Neil Gaiman. “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.”
“Luminaries like Mervyn Peake and my old friend Neil Gaiman are more than good company to keep,” said Akiva Goldsman. “I am grateful to Barry Spikings for the will, and FremantleMedia for the capacity, to help us bring the sprawling glory of Gormenghast to a modern audience.”
“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,” said Dante Di Loreto, President of Scripted Entertainment, FremantleMedia North America. “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.”
“We are tremendously excited by the prospect of seeing the Gormenghast books realized for television,” said Fabian Peake, son of Mervyn and executor of the Peake estate. “This venture presents a unique opportunity to explore the imagination of a multi-faceted artist.”