James Schamus’ Symbolic Exchange, along Germany’s X-Filme, France’s Haut et Court, and the U.K.’s Potboiler, will produce an adaptation of Mary Gabriel’s book “Love and Capital,” about Karl Marx as a limited TV series. It will be written by playwright and screenwriter Alice Birch, who recently wrote the script for William Olroyd’s feature debut “Lady Macbeth” set for U.S. release in 2017.
Published in 2011, “Love and Capital” follows the lives of Jenny and Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels and the two sisters — Mary and Lizzie Burns — whom he loved and who loved him, as well as the Marx daughters. It was a National Book Award finalist, a National Book Critics Circle finalist, and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.
“By allowing us to experience this extraordinary story through the eyes primarily of the women who lived it, Mary Gabriel allows us for the first time to feel the entire human drama that challenged our world,” said Schamus. “This is event television and a perfect topic for large-scale European co-production with partners of tremendous distinction and taste. To have a bold visionary like Alice Birch leading the initial creative charge makes this all the more exciting.”
Schamus is known for his longtime collaboration with director Ang Lee. He produced the Oscar-nominated “Brokeback Mountain” and wrote the screenplay for “The Ice Storm, which won best screenplay at the Cannes Film Festival. He also previously served as CEO of Focus Features. His feature directorial debut “Indignation,” an adaptation of Philip Roth’s 2008 novel, premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival to critical acclaim.