BBC to produce Victorian era ‘War of the Worlds’ Adaptation

In a live announcement by Controller of BBC Drama, Piers Wanger, the BBC have announced an upcoming adaptation of H.G. Wells classic novel, The War of the Worlds.

The War of the Worlds will consist of 3-60 minute episodes, and will be set in the Victorian period. Something you don’t see often, considering everyone wants to make all alien stories either contemporary or futuristic, but the original story was in fact published in 1898. It will be adapted by Peter Harness, who did a fantastic job adapting Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell (if you haven’t seen it, seek it out immediately).

“I’m feeling phenomenally lucky to be writing The War Of The Worlds,” says Harness, “and blowing up gigantic swathes of the Home Counties at the dawn of the twentieth century. Wells’s book is ground zero for all modern science fiction, and like all the best sci-fi, manages to sneak in some pretty astonishing comments on what it is to be a human being too. I’m hoping to follow in the great man’s footsteps by making a terrifying, Martian-packed series which manages to be emotional, characterful, and – deep breath, dare I say it – even political at the same time.”

“It’s a great honour to bring H.G. Wells’s masterpiece to BBC One,” says Damien Timmer, Mammoth Screen Managing Director. “This huge title – the original alien invasion story – has been loosely adapted and riffed on countless times, but no one has ever attempted to follow Wells and locate the story in Woking at the turn of the last century. We hope Peter’s adaptation will be the definitive adaptation of one of the great classic novels – and a visceral, thought provoking thrill ride!”

For those not in the know, here’s a quick synopsis of the story: Horsell Common in Surrey is struck by a huge meteor, and the inhabitants of Earth slowly fall victim to a vicious invasion. The three-part drama follows one man’s attempt to escape the ruthless Martians – but they are determined to destroy all human life as they attempt to conquer the earth…

The War of the Worlds will begin filming in 2018. No air date has been set.