The cast has been revealed for the long-awaited new adaptation of Tom Jones.
The History of Tom Jones, A Foundling was previously adapted as an Oscar-winning film in 1963, starring Albert Finney, and as a BBC TV adaptation in 1997, starring Max Beesley.
The new four-part version is being made for ITV and Masterpiece by the team behind Poldark and Victoria.
Tom Jones will tell the “picaresque story of the title character’s complicated journey to find real love.”
The upcoming period drama series has been written by Gwyneth Hughes, who previously adapted Vanity Fair for ITV a few years ago.
Hughes commented: “Tom Jones is the mother of all romcoms and isn’t that just what we all need after the last couple of years of misery? It’s a story where the sun barely stops shining, where love conquers all, and at its warm heart stand a pair of young sweethearts everyone can root for.”
The Miss Austen Regrets writer added: “Henry Fielding’s 18th century novel is sexy and fun; it’s also a dramatic rollercoaster, addressing so many modern concerns around consent, sexual equality and the pursuit of happiness. Tom and Sophia overcome enormous obstacles before finding their way home and to each other. This is a classic adaptation with a wise soul and a great big smile on its face.”
Leading the cast as our hero Tom is Solly McLeod (The Rising), starring alongside Sophie Wilde (You Don’t Know Me) as heroine Sophia Western.
Tom Jones will begin filming this autumn in and around Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Executive producer James Gandhi teased: “With Gwyneth Hughes’s masterful scripts, Georgia Parris at the directing helm and rising stars Solly McLeod and Sophie Wilde leading the cast – we couldn’t be more excited to bring this joyous 18th century story of identity and romance to the screen.”
Director Georgia Parris describes the series as “an escapist romp into the sights, sounds and textures of 18th century England.”
She said: “It is an intimate story that shows how love and desire drive and confound us all, both women and men. I can’t wait to get started on telling this classic story, one of the first ever English novels, and making it resonate with a modern audience.”
Tom Jones will premiere in 2022 on ITV in the UK, and on PBS in the US.
Henry Fielding’s Tom Jones novel is available on Amazon.