Wilbur Smith's 'Birds of Prey' novels will be adapted for TV

"Wilbur Smith's stories are big and expansive -- his themes are universal and timeless," screenwriter J.J. Connolly says.
By Annie Martin  |  March 25, 2014 at 11:29 AM
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Wilbur Smith's best-selling Birds of Prey novels will be adapted for an upcoming television series.

Birds of Prey, Monsoon and Blue Horizon, are the first novels chronologically in Smith's series about the Courtney family. The adventure series follows the family through the generations as they live, love and die in Africa.

Birds of Prey begins in uncharted 17th-century Africa as the Anglo-Dutch naval war comes to a close, and Monsoon and Blue Horizon continue through to the 18th century. There are thirteen total books in the Courtney series, and the final book in chronological order, A Time to Die, takes place in 1987.

Author and screenwriter J.J. Connolly (Layer Cake) will adapt Birds of Prey, Monsoon and Blue Horizon for the upcoming television series. Corona Pictures and FremantleMedia International will develop the show and pitch the series to buyers at MIPTV in Cannes in April.

"I'm really excited to help bring Birds of Prey to TV screens around the world," Connolly said. "Wilbur Smith's stories are big and expansive -- his themes are universal and timeless."

"The thrilling challenge is to bring alive the passion and vision that Wilbur generated in his original novels and deliver that power both to Wilbur's legion of existing fans and to a new generation of television audience," Connolly continued.

Several of Smith's novels have previously been adapted for television and film. The Diamond Hunters (2001) and The Seventh Scroll (1999) were both made into miniseries, while Gold (1974) and Shout at the Devil (1976) were made into feature films.

[The Hollywood Reporter]

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