A new Inspector Maigret series based on Georges Simenon's bestselling books is in development, four years after ITV axed the most recent Rowan Atkinson-led adaptation.
The drama is in the works from Colin Callender's BAFTA-winning production company Playground Entertainment, who are currently producing Channel 5's All Creatures Great and Small revival.
Little has been revealed about the new show, except that it will be English language and that Playground holds the rights to all 75 novels and 28 short stories based on the highly-skilled French detective.
The move comes three years after ITV cancelled the most recent Maigret adaptation, which ran for four film-length episodes over two series between 2016 and 2017. Rowan Atkinson starred as the titular French detective, with Torchwood actress Lucy Cohu as Madame Maigret and Doctor Who's Shaun Dingwall as Inspector Janvier.
Previous actors to take on the eponymous role include Dumbledore actors Richard Harris and Michael Gambon, as well as classic French film star Jean Gabin.
The Maigret books have sold over 600 million copies worldwide and been translated into more than 50 languages, and follow ingenious Parisian detective Jules Maigret as he solves crimes while sporting his iconic bowler hat, thick overcoat and pipe.
Red Arrow Studios International president and MD Tim Gerhatz said: “As one of the most recognized and celebrated detective novel collections of all time, it’s a privilege to collaborate with Playground and GSL on developing the iconic Jules Maigret character for television, and portraying the romantic yet gritty world of Paris he inhabits.
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"Playground has an eminent reputation for bringing award-winning and striking series to international audiences, and we look forward creating a fresh and distinctive adaptation that will appeal to Maigret’s existing fans as well as new ones.”
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Playground’s joint MDs Scott Huff and David Stern also added: “Georges Simenon was one of the most prolific crime authors of the twentieth century and his seminal creation, Inspector Maigret, remains one of literature’s greatest detectives. It’s a rare opportunity to adapt a work that is both distinctive and timeless and we’re incredibly grateful to the Simenon Estate and for the partnership of Red Arrow as we bring Maigret to a global audience."