Keeley Hawes to star in new ITV drama The Durrells
Keeley Hawes is set to play the lead in ITV's new six-part drama The Durrells.
The Line Of Duty actress will play Louisa Durrell, a middle-aged mother whose life is in meltdown. Her husband died years ago and now, in 1935, his money is almost gone.
With her four unruly children going off the rails and her options in Britain limited by her gender, she decides to uproot her family and move to Corfu in an effort to heal the family and escape the world of uptight Englishness.
The Durrells is based on Gerald Durrell's Corfu memoirs, a trilogy which includes the classic book My Family And Other Animals. It was written by screenwriter Simon Nye and produced by Sid Gentle Films.
Hawes said: "I'm delighted to be playing Louisa Durrell. As a lifelong fan of Gerald Durrell's wonderful books, I can't wait to start filming and telling his stories through Simon Nye's hilarious and poignant adaptation."
The children, ranging in age from 21-year-old would-be novelist Larry to 11-year-old animal-lover Gerry, will be played by Ripper Street's Josh O'Connor, newcomer Callum Woodhouse, Silent Witness actress Daisy Waterstone, and Mr Holmes star Milo Parker.
Gerry grew up to become an author, conservationist and zookeeper. His widow Lee Durrell said: "I am absolutely thrilled that Gerald Durrell and his idyllic childhood in Corfu will appear on our television screens.
"Those sunny, magical days, when eccentric family affairs were interwoven with Gerry's discovery of the natural world, inspired his life's work to rescue animals from the brink of extinction."
The drama will follow the Durrell family as they adjust to their new life, meeting the handsome Spiro Hakaiopulos (Alexis Georgoulis) and the exotic Countess Mavrodaki (Leslie Caron).