More big names join Lily James in BBC’s new ‘Pursuit of Love’ series

We’ve got more casting details on the BBC’s upcoming adaptation of The Pursuit of Love.

Nancy Mitford’s classic 1945 novel is the first in her comedic trilogy of books about an upper-class English family between the First and Second World Wars.

Having been delayed by the coronavirus pandemicThe Pursuit of Love was finally able to begin filming last summer in the Bristol and Bath area of south-west England.

Downton Abbey star Lily James is heading the cast of the three-part drama as Linda Radlett.

Described as “a romantic comedy-drama about love and friendship,” the mini-series has been written by English actress and screenwriter Emily Mortimer (Hugo, Mary Poppins Returns).

Mortimer commented: “I’ve always loved Nancy Mitford so when I was asked to adapt The Pursuit of Love it was impossible to say no. It’s an outrageously funny and honest story, whose central character – the wild, love-addicted Linda Radlett – still reads as a radical.”

Lily James added: “It’s great to be working with Emily. Her brilliant scripts bring new life to this story – full of love, full of friendship, very moving and sad in places, but also funny and true to life.”

Emily Beecham (Cruella) is playing Fanny Logan, alongside Dominic West (Les Misérables) and Dolly Wells (Dracula) as Linda’s parents, Uncle Matthew and Aunt Sadie Radlett.

Emily Mortimer (The Sense of an Ending) – who has also written the scripts – will play Fanny’s mother, The Bolter.

Sherlock star Andrew Scott is playing Lord Merlin, the Radlett’s wealthy and eccentric neighbour.

Executive producer Charles Collier commented: “From the start, we built this show around the talents of three brilliant women: Emily Mortimer, Lily James and Nancy Mitford.

“Our plan is to deliver sharp and innovative female-driven drama, full of warmth, wit and wisdom, which audiences everywhere will take to their hearts.”

The cast also includes Beattie Edmondson (Josh) as Louisa Radlett, Assaad Bouab (Messiah) as Fabrice de Sauveterre, Shazad Latif (Penny Dreadful) as Alfred Wincham, and Freddie Fox (White House Farm) as Tony Kroesig.

The official synopsis reads: “Set in Europe between the two World Wars, the story follows the adventures and misadventures of the charismatic and fearless Linda Radlett (Lily James) and her best friend and cousin Fanny Logan.

“Consumed by a desire for love and marriage, the two women are on the hunt for the ideal husband. Their friendship is put to the test as Fanny settles for a steady life and Linda decides to follow her heart, to increasingly wild and outrageous places.

“As social and political divisions split the nation, their diverging choices raise personal questions that remain intensely relevant today – questions about freedom, about love and sex, and the mystery of the human heart.”

The Pursuit of Love is expected to premiere later this year on BBC One in the UK, and on Amazon Prime Video worldwide.

Lily James didn’t reprise her role as Lady Rose in the first Downton Abbey movie in 2019.

However, she is rumoured to be back in the upcoming sequel, which is set to begin filming this summer.

Every episode of Downton Abbey is available to watch on Amazon Prime Video.