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BBC To adapt John Le Carre Novel for TV series

As seen in the BBC

Published: 15 Jan 2017

The BBC is to adapt another John le Carré spy novel for a new TV series following the success of Golden Globe-winning The Night Manager.

The Spy Who Came In From The Cold, set at the height of the Cold War, is being adapted by the Oscar-winning writer of Slumdog Millionaire, Simon Beaufoy.

It follows Alec Leamas, a hard-drinking British intelligence officer whose East Berlin network is in tatters.

Le Carré said he was “very excited” by the show, which will appear on BBC One.

The series will be another co-production with US network AMC, following their joint effort on The Night Manager.

Tom Hiddleston, Hugh Laurie and Olivia Colman all won Golden Globes for their roles in the drama, while the show itself was nominated for best mini series or TV film at the awards.

The Spy Who Came In From The Cold is set in 1962, months after the building of the Berlin Wall.

In the story, Leamas’s agents are either on the run or dead – victims of the East German counter-intelligence officer Hans-Dieter Mundt.

Leamas is recalled to London where he is offered a chance at revenge.

The novel, written in 1963, was made into a film starring Richard Burton in 1965 and le Carré said he was looking forward to seeing it on screen again.

He said: “I’m very excited by the project, and have great confidence in the team.”

Beaufoy added: “It’s incredibly exciting to be working on the best Cold War spy story ever written.”

The show will be produced by The Ink Factory, the production company behind The Night Manager, in association with Character 7.

Piers Wenger, controller of BBC Drama, said: “Following the huge global success of The Night Manager, it’s a privilege to announce that John le Carré will return to BBC One with one of the best spy thrillers ever written.”