The BBC has confirmed the start date for its upcoming Les Misérables adaptation.
Written by Andrew Davies (Pride and Prejudice, Mr Selfridge), the new six-part mini-series is based on Victor Hugo’s classic 1862 novel.
The first episode will air at 9pm on Sunday 30th December on BBC One in the UK.
The all-star cast includes Dominic West (The Affair, The Hour) as Jean Valjean, David Oyelowo (Selma, Spooks) as Javert and Lily Collins (Tolkien) as Fantine, alongside The Durrells actor Josh O’Connor as Marius and Olivia Colman (The Crown) as Madame Thénardier.
Les Misérables will air in the USA on Masterpiece on PBS in early 2019.
The official synopsis for Episode 1 reads: “1815. War-torn France has been defeated at the battle of Waterloo. Convict Jean Valjean (Dominic West) is nearing the end of his sentence in Toulon after serving 19 years for a petty crime and is released by the ambitious prison guard Javert (David Oyelowo).
“Convinced he will reoffend, Javert forms a deep personal hatred of Valjean.
“Haunted by his past, Valjean experiences a brutal life as an ex-convict, with prejudice at every turn. But an encounter with the wise bishop of Digne (Derek Jacobi) forces Valjean to consider his own morality and the life he wishes to lead.
“Little Marius Pontmercy is being raised as a royalist by his grandfather, Monsieur Gillenormand (David Bradley). Marius’ father, Baron Pontmercy (Henry Lloyd-Hughes), a colonel in Napeleon’s army, is accidentally saved from death at Waterloo by a passing looter, Thenardier (Adeel Akhtar).
“Returning from Waterloo, Pontmercy confronts Gillenormand over his parental rights to Marius – but with tragic consequences.
“Meanwhile, in Paris, beautiful young seamstress Fantine (Lily Collins) meets the charming Felix (Johnny Flynn) whilst out dancing with friends. But will her naivety be her undoing?”