Several British Actors Join JK Rowling’s ‘The Casual Vacancy’ Project


HBO and BBC have teamed up once again to bring you what is hoped to be another wonderful book-to-screen adaptation. This time they’re looking to bring JK Rowling’s non-Harry Potter, adult novel, The Casual Vacancy to life. We’ve known about this project for some time not but this week the cast was finally revealed and will feature a host of British (naturally) actors including Michael Gambon (better known to Americans as “The New Dumbledore”), Keeley Hawes, Rory Kinnear, Monica Dolan, Julia McKenzie and newcomer Abigail Lawrie

Gambon (“The Singing Detective,” “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” parts 1 and 2) is set to play Howard Mollison, owner of the Pagford delicatessen. McKenzie (“Notes on a Scandal,” “Shirley Valentine”) plays his wife, Shirley.

Rory Kinnear (“Skyfall,” “Penny Dreadful”) is to play Barry Fairbrother, Keeley Forsyth (“Coronation Street,” “Emmerdale”) is playing Terri Weedon with newcomer Abigail Lawrie cast as her daughter Krystal Weedon. Howard Mollison’s son Miles is being played by Rufus Jones (“Bill,” “W1A”) and his wife Samantha Mollison being played by Keeley Hawes (“Line of Duty”, “Ashes to Ashes.”)

Reviews of the novel have been mixed at best but we’re not sure if readers were able to separate Rowling’s latest work from that of the teenage wizard in their minds. Perhaps the genius that lies behind the work will be more apparent on HBO and BBC’s air.

No word on an air date or premiere window but with casting complete and filming commencing soon (we assume) the series could be in the can sometime this year. Another BBC/HBO lovechild, Parade’s End, aired first on BBC and then took the better part of a year to make its way to HBO so we’re not expecting to see this one in North America for quite some time.  We’ll let you know if we hear any different (and we hope we do!).

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