ITV have today released promotional pictures for the first episode of their new adaptation of Gerald Durrell’s riveting accounts of his life in Corfu before the Second World War.
Keeley Hawes (Line of Duty, Ashes to Ashes) plays Louisa Durrell in ITV’s brand new six part series The Durrells, written by acclaimed screenwriter Simon Nye and produced by Sid Gentle Films Ltd. International film star Leslie Caron (An American in Paris, Gigi) also stars in the series.
The Durrells is based upon Gerald Durrell’s classic trilogy of Corfu memoirs including the much loved ‘My Family and Other Animals’. Set in 1935, this timeless drama is full of warmth, humour and fun.
The story focuses upon Louisa Durrell (Hawes) whose life is in meltdown. Her husband died years ago and his money has all but run out. Her four unruly ‘children’ Larry, 21, played by Josh O’Connor (Ripper Street, Peaky Blinders), Leslie, 18, a role taken by newcomer Callum Woodhouse, Margo, 17, played by Daisy Waterstone (Silent Witness, Testament of Youth) and Gerry, 11, with Milo Parker (Mr Holmes, Ghosthunters) cast in the role, are going off the rails. Gerry is obsessed with animals and about to be thrown out of school; Larry is a would-be novelist but the worst estate agent in Bournemouth, and the middle two are hitting adulthood like a car-crash. It is the 1930s, and a woman’s options are limited.
Louisa realises she can carry on struggling, marry someone comfortably off but oppressive, or make a radical change and escape… from a domestic pressure-cooker, British weather, uptight Englishness and narrow horizons. This is a rescue mission to somewhere her family can heal itself before it’s too late. So, they uproot and move to Corfu!
Over six episodes we follow the Durrell family as they adjust to their new life. Along the way they’ll meet new friends, rivals and lovers.
The first episode is set to be broadcast on Sunday the 3rd of April on ITV 1 from 8:00pm to 9:00pm. More promotional pictures and information below:
Louisa Durrell’s (Keeley Hawes) life is in meltdown. Her four unruly children are going off the rails. 11-year-old Gerald (Milo Parker) is about to be thrown out of school, Larry (Josh O’Connor), the eldest is a would-be novelist but the worst estate agent in Bournemouth and the middle two, neurotic Margo (Daisy Waterstone) and gun mad Leslie (Callum Woodhouse) are hitting adulthood like a car crash. It is 1935 and a woman’s options are limited. Much to Larry’s bemusement she takes his flippant advice and makes a radical change by whisking her family away to the sun drenched island of Corfu. A cheap and untamed paradise – which also happens to have no electricity.
Having barely enough money to survive they find themselves relying on charismatic local, Spiro Hakaiopulos (Alexis Georgoulis). Spiro not only finds them a ramshackle house to live in, he also installs Lugaretzia (Anna Savva) as their home-help who is very cheap but a complete hypochondriac.
Despite the beauty of the island, the children soon fall back into their old ways. Corfu provides the perfect inspiration for Larry’s writing and he exacts his revenge on Leslie who insists upon shooting at anything and everything, driving the family mad. Margo takes advantage of the idyllic weather but soon runs into trouble with a local monk (Nick Orestis Chaniotakis) and has to use her feminine guile to win him round. Words fail Margo however, when Larry’s wealthy, party loving friends Max (Max Befort) and Donald (Ben Hall) arrive and she finds herself instantly besotted with Max.
For Gerry the island is his paradise. Rich in exciting species he happily spends his days exploring with Roger the dog and his new found friend and kindred spirit, Dr Theodore (Theo) Stephanides (Yorgos Karamihos). Much to the family’s bewilderment the terrace is soon filled with an eclectic menagerie of animals (pelican and tortoise) and insects (wolf spider), which Gerry eagerly brings home to study.
Believing their mother needs a love interest, Larry invites Captain Creech (James Cosmo) for dinner. However, his suitability for Louisa’s affections quickly proves doubtful when it appears that Larry has brought an old sea dog to the table.
With thanks to ITV.