Eva Green is brothel madam Lydia Wells in first look images from The Luminaries

The much-anticipated TV adaptation of The Luminaries is currently filming in New Zealand

Eva Green in The Luminaries

The first images from upcoming BBC drama The Luminaries have been unveiled – including shots of Casino Royale and Penny Dreadful star Eva Green as coldly calculating brothel madam Lydia Wells.


The long-awaited adaptation of Eleanor Catton’s 2013 Man Booker Prize-winning novel is currently filming in New Zealand.

These new images take us back to 1866, introducing a well-groomed and immaculately-dressed Lydia with her Tarot cards laid out across the table.

The Luminaries

Another image reveals Bridge of Spies actress Eve Hewson sharing a laugh behind the scenes with Himesh Patel. Hewson plays the unfortunate adventurer Anna Wetherell, while Patel has joined the cast as Emery Staines.

The six-part series also stars The Cry actor Ewen Leslie as Crosbie Wells, as well as New Zealand actor Marton Csokas as Francis Carver. Further cast includes Erik Thomson, Benedict Hardie, Yoson An and Richard Te Are.

The Luminaries

Adapted from the novel by Catton herself, The Luminaries will be broadcast on BBC2 in the UK and TVNZ1 in New Zealand.

According to the official synopsis, “The Luminaries tells an epic story of love, murder and revenge, as men and women travelled across the world to make their fortunes. It is a 19th century tale of adventure and mystery, set on the Wild West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island in the boom years of the 1860s gold rush.


“The story follows defiant young adventurer Anna Wetherell, who has sailed from Britain to New Zealand to begin a new life. There she meets the radiant Emery Staines, an encounter that triggers a strange kind of magic that neither can explain. As they fall in love, driven together and apart by fateful coincidence, these star-crossed lovers begin to wonder: do we make our fortunes, or do our fortunes make us?”

Sign up for the free RadioTimes.com newsletter