BBC developing remake of 1970’s classic drama I, Claudius

HBO and BBC co-production based on two Robert Graves books, I, Claudius and Claudius the God, is expected for BBC2

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The BBC is close to greenlighting a remake of its hit 1970’s series I, Claudius, RadioTimes.com understands.

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The Corporation has confirmed that it is on board with US cable giant HBO in developing a remake of the series but insisted that talks about the cast were in “the very earliest stages”.

According to sources the development will be based on the two Robert Graves books I, Claudius and Claudius the God.

The new series will air on BBC2 and be made by BBC Worldwide Productions, RadioTimes.com understands, although the cast and writing team have not yet been identified.

“Many people have tried to make films of it and it seems to be a format that works best for television,” Robert Graves’ son Juan Graves told RadioTimes.com from his home in Majorca. “I wish the BBC well but the family no longer have a say as the rights were sold a long time ago.”

Planned film projects by legendary director Orson Welles and Alexander Korda were abandoned with the BBC version of the 1970s easily remaining the most successful.

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First airing in 1976, the original series starred John Hurt as emperor Caligula and Derek Jacobi as the stammering Claudius and followed key elements of the history of the Roman Empire including the assassination of Julius Caesar and Caligula’s eventual assassination.