Never accuse “45 Years” filmmaker Andrew Haigh of resting on his — literal, given the amount of awards love his heartbreaking latest feature received — laurels, as The Hollywood Reporter shares that the writer and director will next set about turning his attentions to television. Haigh will adapt and direct the limited series “The North Water,” based on Ian McGuire’s novel of the same name.
McGuire’s lauded novel, which was longlisted for the 2016 Man Booker Prize, follows a seemingly ill-fated nineteenth-century whaling expedition in which characters grow to fear a monster among their own ranks, not just the terrors of the seas they travel. The story focuses on harpooner Henry Drax and first-timer Patrick Sumner, a pair of mismatched men who eventually come to startling blows in a tale that sounds, quite frankly, relentlessly unnerving.
The novel has already drawn copious comparisons to both Cormac McCarthy and Joseph Conrad, and should provide Haigh with a wild new sandbox (ocean joke here) to play in. The series is being developed by the BBC and See-Saw Films, and will reportedly by a six-episode limited experience.
The project was announced on Monday by See-Saw’s TV COO Hakan Kousetta and head of TV Jamie Laurenson, who said of their new series, ‘Ian McGuire’s novel is brilliantly both a page turning thriller and an incredible exploration of the human condition. From our very first conversations with Andrew it was clear that he is passionate about both aspects of the story and we’re thrilled that he’s come on board to bring his vision of the novel to a television audience.”
Haigh recently wrapped work on his “Lean on Pete” and is also on deck to direct a currently untitled Alexander McQueen biopic.