The highly anticipated television series based on Elena Ferrante’s acclaimed Neapolitan quartet – four novels about the lives of two friends from a poor neighborhood in Naples – will be shown in Israel on HOT starting in December.
The first two episodes of the adaptation of the first novel in the series, My Brilliant Friend, just premiered at the Venice Film Festival to favorable reviews.
The series, which is in Italian, was co-produced by HBO and RAI.
Writing in Variety, Daniel D’Addario said: “My Brilliant Friend is an impressive effort, a translation of novel to screen that preserves certain of its literary qualities while transmuting others into moving and effective TV.” Daniel Fienberg, of The Hollywood Reporter, wrote: “The series’ first two hours mark an extraordinarily promising beginning.”
The first season will feature six more episodes and the series will comprise 32 episodes over four seasons.
Ferrante’s novels and the love that readers have for them was already the subject of a documentary film, Ferrante Fever.
Aside from the books’ literary quality and their extraordinarily loyal following, they are notable for the fact that Ferrante has kept her identity completely secret. Elena Ferrante is a pseudonym and the author has never made a public appearance or done an interview, except via email. An Italian journalist claimed to have figured out her identity in 2016, and said she is an Italian editor and translator who is Jewish and is the daughter of a woman who was a refugee from the Nazis.
Ferrante has never confirmed nor denied the theory. There has been other wild speculation that she is really a married couple who write together, or a male film director.
But readers of the novels will be pleased to know that Ferrante, whomever she or he may be, collaborated on this series.