“He’s quite brooding. The one piece of direction I got regularly was to stop smiling. There is so much stuff going on in Andrei. There are these long passages where he’s in a carriage looking at an oak tree, with pages and pages of conflict and existential deep thought. [But] I don’t think he is a classic glamorous hero. He’s not very likeable. He’s very flawed - he’s a bastard throughout. It’s the conflicted searcher. Andrei goes deeper and deeper into this existential mess.” James Norton on Prince Andrei, War and PeaceI zoned in on War and Peace as a James Norton fan—if you haven’t seen Norton as a psychotic killer in Happy Valley (avail on Netflix) you really need to. Now I find myself reading the entire massive piece of historical fiction just so I can be a better educated viewer of the mini-series starring Norton, Lily James, Paul Dano, Gillian Anderson, Jim Broadbent, Stephen Rea, Callum Turner, Tuppence Middleton, and Aneurin Barnard.
But Lifetime’s new trailer has me confused. Not at the tough hip approach—they’re trying to appeal to a new generation with their ‘reimagining’ of a classic and to the rest of you who usually find historical dramas a snooze-fest—but at the length of the show. The BBC 6 part mini-series is being touted here as a four parter! Has the promotional team got the wrong end of the stick or are we seeing a slightly modified version of the ‘epic’ drama based on Tolstoy’s classic? What the what!?
Just in time for this post, BBC 1 has just released a nifty behind the scenes video. Lots of new footage and comments from the cast, check it out here