Lily James, Andrew Scott and Dominic West will star in an adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s The Pursuit Of Love, written by Emily Mortimer.
Filming has begun on the series, which is the BBC’s first new drama to start since the coronavirus lockdown, and the production team has worked with independent health and safety consultants to develop comprehensive production protocols.
It will be filmed primarily around the Bristol and Bath area and is set in Europe between the First and Second World Wars. It follows the adventures and misadventures of the charismatic and fearless Linda Radlett, played by James, and her best friend and cousin Fanny Logan, played by Emily Beecham.
The series, which will also be directed by Mortimer, follows the young women who are consumed by a desire for love and marriage and are on the hunt for the ideal husband.
However, their friendship is put to the test as Fanny settles for a steady life and Linda decides to follow her heart, to increasingly wild and outrageous places.
West and Dolly Wells will play Linda’s parents, Uncle Matthew and Aunt Sadie Radlett, while Scott is cast as Lord Merlin, the Radletts’ wealthy and eccentric neighbour.
Mortimer will also appear as Fanny’s mother, known as The Bolter for her series of love affairs, and Beattie Edmondson will play Louisa Radlett.
Linda and Fanny’s suitors include Assaad Bouab as Fabrice de Sauveterre, Shazad Latif as Alfred Wincham and Freddie Fox as Tony Kroesig.
Mortimer said: “I’ve always loved Nancy Mitford, so when I was asked to adapt The Pursuit of Love it was impossible to say no.
“It’s an outrageously funny and honest story, whose central character – the wild, love-addicted Linda Radlett – still reads as a radical. I feel privileged to be directing this show and working with the brilliant teams at Open Book, Moonage Pictures, Amazon and the BBC.”
James added: “It’s great to be working with Emily. Her brilliant scripts bring new life to this story – full of love, full of friendship, very moving and sad in places, but also funny and true to life.”
The three hour-long episodes will premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer in the UK, and be available on Amazon Prime Video in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.