Sally Rooney's stories seem to be a constant fixture on millennial bookworm's Instagram feeds everywhere. Pretty soon they'll be making their way to even more screens all around the world. A TV adaptation of her second novel Normal People is coming soon to Hulu, and has even already started filming. Here's why Hulu's Normal People is going to be your new favorite show.
Rooney is already many people's favorite author. The 28-year-old Irish writer has been praised for her uncanny ability to capture the nuances of the millennial mindset. Not only are all your friends posting about Rooney, but celebrities are as well. In a recent profile in Entertainment Weekly, Taylor Swift said that Rooney is one of her favorite writers right now. She said, "I really like her book Conversations With Friends. I like the tone she takes when she's writing. I think it's like being inside someone's mind."
It's that conversational tone that has made both of Rooney's novels successful, and that will likely help the TV adaptation of Normal People become an instant hit. Hulu is producing the series with BBC Three and it'll be comprised of 12 half-hour episodes. Rooney herself is adapting it, along with writers Alice Birch and Mark O’Rowe, so the series will likely maintain her signature style. Lenny Abrahamson (who directed 2015's Room) and British TV and theatre director Hettie MacDonald will each direct six episodes. Gentleman Jack's Daisy Edgar-Jones and relative newcomer Mark O'Rowe are set to star in the show.
The series will follow the same story as the book: Marianne and (Edgar-Jones) and Connell (O'Rowe) meet as teenagers, even though they're from very different backgrounds: he's from a working class family and is extremely popular, while she's more affluent and is socially awkward. Despite their differences, form a connection that carries them through college and adulthood. Over the years, they build the kind of will-they-won't-they relationship that is only rivaled by the the most melodramatic of love stories.
Rooney recently told Entertainment Weekly that she enjoys spending time with the characters of Normal People, which bodes well for how audiences will likely respond to them. Rooney said, "“I’m still fond of these characters, and that’s a good thing, because I’m having to spend a lot of time with them again!”
Abrahamson also said in a statement that he's looking forward to directing these actors in this love story. He said:
It's incredibly exciting to be bringing Sally Rooney’s extraordinary novel to the screen with such a brilliant cast and crew. In Daisy Edgar Jones and Paul Mescal, I feel I have found two young actors who can vividly capture Marianne and Connell and bring alive the profound and beautiful relationship at the centre of the story. It’s also lovely for me to be shooting in Ireland again and telling an Irish story after shooting abroad.
Filming has already begun on the series, and the production is set to continue in the following months in Dublin and Sligo in Ireland and in Italy.
Normal People is set to premiere in the United States on Hulu in 2020.