|The Casual Vacancy|
|Based on|| The Casual Vacancy |
by J. K. Rowling
|Written by||Sarah Phelps|
|Directed by||Jonny Campbell|
|Starring|| Monica Dolan |
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of episodes||3|
|Executive producers|| Paul Trijbits |
J. K. Rowling
|Cinematography||Tony Slater Ling|
|Running time||182 minutes|
|Production company||Brontë Film and Television|
|Distributor|| BBC (United Kingdom)|
Warner Bros. Television Distribution (International)
|Original network|| BBC One (United Kingdom)|
HBO (United States and Canada)
|Picture format||16:9 1080i|
|Original release||15 February –|
1 March 2015
The Casual Vacancy is a 2015 British miniseries based on the 2012 novel of the same title by J. K. Rowling.Directed by Jonny Campbell and written by Sarah Phelps, the series premiered on 15 February 2015 on BBC One in the United Kingdom and on 29 April 2015 on HBO in the United States.
Pagford is a seemingly idyllic English village with a cobbled market square and ancient abbey, behind the pretty façade however, is a town at war: rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils. Pagford is not what it first seems. At the Parish Council meeting the subject of Sweetlove House and its legacy arises. Howard Mollison, the Chairman, heads up the faction who want to see an end to the legacy; the thorn in his side is Barry Fairbrother, who makes an impassioned speech outlining the importance of the legacy, and the services it provides. For now, Barry has won the argument.
When Barry dies suddenly, Pagford is left in shock, and the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the village has yet seen. Three candidates are soon lined up: Miles Mollison, Howard's son; Colin Wall, Barry's friend; and Simon Price, Barry's half-brother.
The parish council election approaches and Pagford is on tenterhooks, awaiting the next post from 'The Ghost of Barry Fairbrother'.
Samantha decides to give a dinner party for all the warring factions on the parish council. But when Howard and Shirley unexpectedly arrive, the party soon spirals out of control.
Across in The Fields, Terri is waking up from the mist of her addiction, on the fragile road to recovery. Krystal begins to hope there might be a future for her family.
With the parish council election imminent, tensions rise in Pagford and each side steps up their campaign. Meanwhile, Samantha and Miles' marriage has reached breaking point. Miles pleads for a quiet life, promising that once the election is over everything will calm down, but Samantha doesn't believe him.
Howard's dark secret is revealed in The Ghost's final post, while in The Fields Krystal returns home to find Terri back to her old ways. Hope seems more fragile than ever, and news of a tragedy leaves the whole community reeling.
The miniseries was announced on 3 December 2012.It was commissioned from The Blair Partnership who represent J. K. Rowling. The series was produced through an independent production company operated by Neil Blair and Rick Senat (who were executive producers of the series), on behalf of The Blair Partnership. The deal was struck following discussions between Blair and BBC One Controller Danny Cohen. J. K. Rowling was to collaborate closely with the project, with the number and length of the episodes then still to be decided.
On 12 September 2013, Warner Bros. announced that it will serve as the worldwide TV distributor of the series, except in the United Kingdom.
After a year and a half without news on the production itself, casting was announced in June 2014. Filming began in August 2014 in the Gloucestershire towns of Painswick, Bisley, Northleach and Minchinhampton, Dauntsey, and in the city of Bristol and at Archway School.
British band Solomon Grey composed the music for the series, which heavily features tracks from their 2015 album Selected Works, along with original songs.
|No.||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||UK viewers|
|1||"Episode 1"||Jonny Campbell||Sarah Phelps||15 February 2015||8.80|
|The village of Pagford is left in shock when a local resident dies. Pagford is seemingly an English idyll, but what lies behind the pretty facade is a community at war.|
|2||"Episode 2"||Jonny Campbell||Sarah Phelps||22 February 2015||6.39|
|The parish council election approaches and Pagford is on tenterhooks awaiting the next post from 'the Ghost of Barry Fairbrother'.|
|3||"Episode 3"||Jonny Campbell||Sarah Phelps||1 March 2015||5.95|
|With the parish council election imminent, tensions rise in Pagford.|
The critical response to the opening episode was mostly positive. In a particularly praise-filled review for Digital Spy, Cameron McKewan described the series as having a "perfect cast with a biting script". He summarised: "It's a cracking first instalment for the three-part series with bountiful characters to take in, and the relationships not clearly defined from the outset (rewardingly so)"In a review for The Guardian , Stuart Jeffries also gave a positive response, whilst describing the series as "The Archers meets Benefit Street" Comparing the TV adaptation more positively than the novel itself, Gerard O'Donovan, in a review for The Telegraph , awarded the series opener 4 out of 5 stars. He optimistically summarised: "...the performances are uniformly good, the direction is inventive, and there's an undeniable topicality and panache to this adaptation that convinces you that just around the corner something will pull it all together and make it succeed." Ellen E Jones, writing for The Independent , took a similar approach with review title: "JK Rowling's story is a far better drama than it is a book"
Elsewhere, however, reception to the series opening episode were less favourable. Grace Dent of The Independent said that "it was odd to read reports that the show was attacking the middle classes and glorifying 'the noble savage'. It was glaringly clear, to me at least, from Phelps' script that while Michael Gambon's character Howard Mollison was indeed a terrible snob, we could hardly disagree that the 'feral' kids wiping bogeys down his deli window were spoiling village ambience. These were difficult notions of 'village life' – the junkies, the domestic abusers, the shark-like property developers, the upwardly mobiles, [and] the downwardly spiralling – and I applaud Rowling and Phelps for picking at them."
Joanne Rowling, better known by her pen name J. K. Rowling, is a British author, philanthropist, film producer, television producer, and screenwriter. She is best known for writing the Harry Potter fantasy series, which has won multiple awards and sold more than 500 million copies, becoming the best-selling book series in history. The books are the basis of a popular film series, over which Rowling had overall approval on the scripts and was a producer on the final films. She also writes crime fiction under the pen name Robert Galbraith.
Sir Michael John Gambon is an Irish-English actor. Having trained under Laurence Olivier, he started his career on stage at the Royal National Theatre, and went on to receive a Tony Award nomination for Best Actor in a Play for his work in David Hare's Skylight on Broadway.
Harry Potter is a series of seven fantasy novels written by British author J. K. Rowling. The novels chronicle the lives of a young wizard, Harry Potter, and his friends Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley, all of whom are students at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The main story arc concerns Harry's struggle against Lord Voldemort, a dark wizard who intends to become immortal, overthrow the wizard governing body known as the Ministry of Magic and subjugate all wizards and Muggles.
Sarah Phelps is a British television screenwriter, radio writer, playwright and television producer. She is best known for her work on EastEnders, a number of BBC serial adaptations including Agatha Christie's The Witness For the Prosecution, And Then There Were None, Ordeal by Innocence, The ABC Murders and The Pale Horse; Charles Dickens's Great Expectations and Oliver Twist; and J. K. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy, and work with the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Tom Burke is an English actor. He is best known for his roles as Athos in the 2014–2016 BBC series The Musketeers, Dolokhov in the 2016 BBC literary-adaptation miniseries War & Peace, the eponymous character Cormoran Strike in the 2017 BBC series Strike, and Orson Welles in the 2020 film Mank.
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The Tales of Beedle the Bard is a book of children's stories by the author J. K. Rowling. There is a storybook of the same name mentioned in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the last book of the Harry Potter series.
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Neil Blair is an English literary agent, television producer, and film producer.
The Casual Vacancy is a 2012 novel written by J. K. Rowling. The book was published worldwide by the Little, Brown Book Group on 27 September 2012. A paperback edition was released on 23 July 2013. It was Rowling's first publication since the Harry Potter series, her first apart from that series, and her first novel for adult readership.
Barry Cunningham is a British publisher, who worked for various publishers including Penguin Books and Bloomsbury before setting up Chicken House publishing in 2000. He is most well known for signing J. K. Rowling and publishing Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone in 1997.
The Cuckoo's Calling is a 2013 crime fiction novel by J. K. Rowling, published under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. It is the first novel in the Cormoran Strike series of detective novels and was followed by The Silkworm in 2014, Career of Evil in 2015, Lethal White in 2018 and Troubled Blood in 2020.
"Episode 1" is the first episode of British miniseries The Casual Vacancy based on the novel of the same title by J. K. Rowling.
"Episode 2" is the second episode of the British miniseries The Casual Vacancy based on the novel of the same title by J. K. Rowling.
"Episode 3" is the third and final episode of the British miniseries The Casual Vacancy based on the novel of the same title by J. K. Rowling.
Joseph Kennedy is an actor, singer and musician.
Strike is a British crime drama television programme based on the Cormoran Strike detective novels written by J. K. Rowling under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. The programme was first broadcast on BBC One on 27 August 2017, after receiving an advance premiere at the British Film Institute on 10 August 2017.
The second season of Sex and the City, an American television romantic comedy-drama, aired in the United States on HBO from June 6 to October 3, 1999. Based on the eponymous book written by Candace Bushnell, the series was created by Darren Star and produced by Darren Star Productions, HBO Original Programming, and Warner Bros. Television. Star, Barry Josen and Michael Patrick King served as the series' executive producers. The show follows the relationships and sexual escapades of Carrie Bradshaw, a sex columnist for the fictional New York Star, and her friends Samantha Jones, Charlotte York and Miranda Hobbes.
Abigail Lawrie is a British actress. Her first role in film or television was in the BBC's adaptation of J. K. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy.