Claire Danes to replace Keira Knightley in Apple TV+’s The Essex Serpent
According to Variety, Emmy and Golden Globe-winning actress Claire Danes has officially signed on for the leading role in Apple TV+’s upcoming series adaptation of author Sarah Perry’s period novel titled The Essex Serpent. Danes will be replacing Oscar nominee Keira Knightley, who left the project due to child care concerns caused by the ongoing pandemic.
Published in 2016 by Serpent’s Tail, The Essex Serpent will follow the story of a newly widowed named Cora in 1893, who after the death of her abusive husband have managed to relocate from Victorian London to the small village of Aldwinter in Essex. After arriving in her new town, she immediately gets intrigued by village’s local superstition that a mythical creature known as the Essex Serpent has return to the area.
The series adaptation will be directed by Clio Barnard (Dark River) from a screenplay written by Anna Symon (Mrs. Wilson). It will be executive produced by Knightley, Barnard, Symon, Jamie Laurenson, Hakan Kousetta, Patrick Walters, Iain Canning and Emile Sherman with Andrea Cornwell set as a producer.
The series will be Danes’ latest major TV project following her leading performance in the acclaimed political thriller Homeland which concluded its 8-season run last year. Her other notable works are: My So-Called Life which gave her her first Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a TV Series Drama; and Temple Grandin which won her an Emmy and Golden Globe Awards for Best Actress in a Limited Series.
(Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for Vulture Festival)