HBO and BBC One have partnered for Shibden Hall, an eight-episode drama series from BAFTA-winning writer Sally Wainwright (To Walk Invisible, Happy Valley). The series is a Lookout Point production for the BBC and co-produced with HBO.
Set in West Yorkshire in 1832, Shibden Hall tells the epic story of the remarkable landowner, Anne Lister. Returning after years of exotic travel and social climbing, Anne determines to transform the fate of her faded ancestral home, Shibden Hall, in Halifax.
To do this, she must re-open her coal mines and marry well. But the charismatic, single-minded, swashbuckling Anne Lister – who walked like a man, dressed head-to-foot in black, and charmed her way into high society – has no intention of marrying a man. True to her own nature, she plans to marry a woman.
“Anne Lister is a gift to a dramatist,” said Wainwright who based the series on Lister’s diaries. “To bring Anne Lister to life on screen is the fulfillment of an ambition I’ve had for twenty years. Shibden Hall is a place I have known and loved since I was a child.”
Said Casey Bloys, President HBO Programming said, “We are thrilled to partner with the extraordinarily talented Sally Wainwright on this epic story and delve into the exceptionally unique life of Anne Lister. We are also pleased to continue our long and successful relationship with the BBC and look forward to our partnership with Faith Penhale and the team at Lookout Point.”
Lookout Point previously co-produced the 2012 miniseries Parade’s End for HBO and BBC.
“The originality and ambition of the writing in Shibden Hall is Sally Wainwright at her boldest and best,” said Piers Wenger, Controller BBC Drama Commissioning.
Executive Producers are Sally Wainwright, Faith Penhale for Lookout Point and Piers Wenger for BBC One. The series will start filming in Yorkshire next year.