A blockbuster novel for over 150 years comes vividly to life in award-winning screenwriter Andrew Davies’s multi-layered retelling of Les Misérables by Victor Hugo.
This enthralling television event (not a musical) airs in six episodes on Masterpiece, Sundays, April 14 – May 19, 2019 on CPTV.
Dominic West (The Affair; The Wire) stars as Jean Valjean, the most famous fugitive in literature, with David Oyelowo (Selma; Small Island) as his relentless pursuer, Javert. Lily Collins (Rules Don’t Apply; Love, Rosie) appears as the tragic seamstress, Fantine; Ellie Bamber (Nocturnal Animals) plays her adolescent daughter, Cosette; Olivia Colman (The Favourite) and Adeel Akhtar (Unforgotten) are Cosette’s cruel overseers, the Thénardiers; and Josh O’Connor (The Durrells in Corfu) is the student and reluctant revolutionary Marius, who falls in love with Cosette at first sight.
Joining the extensive cast are David Bradley (Game of Thrones; Harry Potter) as Marius’s formidable grandfather, Monsieur Gillenormand, and Derek Jacobi (Gladiator; Last Tango in Halifax) as the kindly Bishop of Digne, who rescues Valjean at his lowest ebb.
In a triumph of scripting, Masterpiece veteran screenwriter Davies (Pride & Prejudice, Bleak House, and more than a dozen other productions) preserves Hugo’s intricate plotting, striking historical vignettes, powerful themes, and evocative characterizations, producing an epic television experience that is worthy of the original novel.
The first English translation of Les Misérables in 1862 left the French title (meaning “the wretched” or “the dispossessed”) in place. And so it has been known in English ever since, through countless printed editions, plays, musicals, and movies. Writing in 2017, Princeton University scholar and translator David Bellos put Victor Hugo’s masterpiece in context. “Among all the gifts France has given to Hollywood, Broadway and the common reader…, Les Misérables stands out as the greatest by far.”
For more information on this exciting new adaptation, visit the Masterpiece website>>