Normal People producers working on Conversations With Friends adaptation in lockdown

Rooney's first novel is being adapted by the 'Normal People' team

Normal People first trailer

The team behind Normal People have opened up about adapting Sally Rooney’s first novel, Conversations with Friends, for TV.

Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, producer Ed Guiney said that he and co-producer Lenny Abrahamson were enjoying finding the similarities and differences between Rooney’s books.

Obviously [it] is a cousin of Normal People in a way, but it’s also quite different,” Guiney said.

“We’re actively developing that and Lenny’s going to direct the opening episodes of that again, and that’s very exciting and a lovely thing to be working on during the lockdown.”

Rooney’s first book follows the complex friendship of Frances and Bobbi, two spoken-word performers who find themselves befriending and getting caught up in a married couple’s relationship.

Abrahamson has previously said of adapting Rooney’s debut: “I love Conversations With Friends, its depth, humour and freshness, and it’s an honour to be involved in bringing it to the screen.”

The news was announced back in February, with BBC exec Piers Wenger saying: “It was a decision that made itself. We will commission work from Sally Rooney for as long as she writes it.

“We think she’s such an exciting voice, in the way that she’s able to write about young people’s lives in a really direct and authentic way, is – her work speaks for itself, really.”

Normal People has been a breakout success for BBC Three, giving the online channel its best ever week for programme requests after it was requested more than 21.8 million times within its first seven days.

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