HBO claims US rights for BBC’s His Dark Materials

By Nathaniel Dalby - Mon 17th Sep 2018 News

The Phillip Pullman novels will be adapted for TV.

Lyra rides a polar bear into battle in The Golden Compass.

HBO has purchased the rights to air the BBC series based on His Dark Materials

The fantasy novels are planned to be adapted for the BBC in the UK, with HBO distributing the show in the US and elsewhere worldwide. 

HBO will also co-produce the series, meaning it will have significant investment compared to the BBC’s other shows.

The first series of His Dark Materials, which is based on the first novel The Northern Lights (known as The Golden Compass in the US), has recently finished filming, with a second series already confirmed. 

The show is full of high-profile stars including James McAvoy, Ruth Wilson and Dafne Keen, whom most will know from X-Men film Logan

A new adaptation of the novels has been planned for a while, ever since 2007’s Golden Compass film was a critical failure.

A TV series appears to be the best way to adapt the books to screen, as much like Game of Thrones, there’s too much plot to be contained to a 2-hour film. 

The novels follow Lyra Belacqua, an orphan in Oxford who finds herself embroiled in a world in which science and magic come hand-in-hand. 

His Dark Materials has always been shadowed by controversy thanks to the books’ seemingly anti-religious stance, though author Philip Pullman has claimed that they are more anti-authority than anything else. 

One of the criticisms of the film was that it shied away from these ideas, so it will be interesting to see how the TV series handles them.

Whilst there has been no formal release date for His Dark Materials, the series is set to make its debut sometime in 2019.

Source: AV Club