‘The Luminaries’ gallery: 8 new photos from BBC’s New Zealand period drama

The BBC has released a gorgeous set of promotional photos for The Luminaries.

The upcoming mini-series is set on the Wild West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island during the 1860s gold rush.

Adapted by novelist Eleanor Catton from her award-winning novel, The Luminaries is described as “an epic story of love, murder and revenge, as men and women travelled across the world to make their fortunes.”

Catton was the youngest ever recipient of the Man Booker Prize when it won in 2013.

Penny Dreadful star Eva Green leads the six-part period drama’s cast.

She’s joined by Eve Hewson (Robin HoodBridge of Spies), Marton Csokas (Lord of the Rings), Himesh Patel (EastEnders), Benedict Hardie (Hacksaw Ridge), Yoson An (Mulan) and Ewen Leslie (Top of the Lake).

Former Bond girl Eva Green previously commented: “Eleanor has written a series of brilliant screenplays. I loved her original novel and it’s so exciting that her own screen adaptation reveals yet more exquisite material.”

Yesterday star Himesh Patel, who plays Emery Staines, told Radio Times: “It’s very different from the book, I can tell you that much. Eleanor Catton who wrote the novel and won the Man Booker for it, she adapted it herself … she’s done such an amazing job of telling her story from a different point of view.”

He added: “It was really interesting reading her novel and then reading what Eleanor’s done with it, and I’m very excited to see how it turns out…

“It is really compelling what she’s done. It’s not like she’s ripping up the rule book, it’s her own work — it’s interesting when a writer has adapted her own novel.”

The official synopsis reads: “The story follows defiant young adventurer Anna Wetherell, who has sailed from Britain to New Zealand to begin a new life.

“There she meets the radiant Emery Staines, an encounter that triggers a strange kind of magic that neither can explain.

“As they fall in love, driven together and apart by fateful coincidence, these star-crossed lovers begin to wonder: do we make our fortunes, or do our fortunes make us?”

Screenplay writer and novelist Eleanor Catton said in 2018 when the project was announced: “I’ve had tremendous fun adapting this novel for the screen and feel incredibly lucky to be working with such fantastic people across different art forms.”

She added: “Writing a novel is a solitary business, but writing for the screen is emphatically collaborative, and to see the world of The Luminaries enlarged and enriched in ways that go far beyond the scope of my own imagination has been a humbling and hugely exhilarating experience.”

The Luminaries will air this summer on BBC One in the UK and premieres tomorrow on TVNZ1 in New Zealand.

Eleanor Catton’s novel is available on Amazon.