The Imperfectionists being adapted for TV by BBC


The Imperfectionists, the impressive 2010 debut novel by Tom Rachman, is being adapted for television by the BBC, the Globe and Mail reports.

The Imperfectionists was originally optioned as a film by Brad Pitt, but once the book was distilled into a two-hour film, the story didn't work anymore. Rachman hopes the television format will better serve the story of a struggling newspaper in Rome and the cast of characters that are employed there. In the novel, the paper's demise is shared through the perspective of several characters, including the editor-in-chief, a reporter-at-large in Cairo, the financial officer, the publisher and the obituary writer. Rachman says the current plan is for each television episode to focus on a different character, which models the book more closely than Pitt's screenplay did.

"In addition to making this a story about journalism and how the news media works, I was also keen on doing a novel that would talk about the workplace," Rachman told Jian Ghomeshi in 2010. "I always found the workplace to be [full of] fascinating sorts of stories, most of which we are never exposed to and never know."

Rachman is serving as executive producer on the television project, which is being taken on by BBC Worldwide. "I would be a consultant and probably look over the scripts and things like that and be in contact with the script writer," Rachman told the Globe and Mail.

Tom Rachman was on CBC Radio's Q in 2010 to discuss The Imperfectionists when it first came out. You can listen to his conversation with Jian Ghomeshi below:

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