Michael Dibdin’s Aurelio Zen heading to British, American television

Well this is very cool.

Variety is reporting that Left Bank Pictures, in a partnership with a number of broadcasters that include PBS and the BBC Worldwide, is bringing the Italian cop Aurelio Zen to the small screen. Rufus Sewell will play Zen. Sewell starred in DARK CITY and A KNIGHTS TALE as well as leading the ill-fated U.S. TV version of ELEVENTH HOUR. He will soon be visable in the televison mini-series of Ken Follet’s The PILLARS OF THE EARTH.

Rufus Sewell: “I’m thrilled to be a part of this project with the opportunity to play such an intriguing, complex and likeable character.”

Aurellio Zen is the creation of the late Irish author Michael Dibdin and appeared in eleven novels, starting with 1988’s RATKING.

The plan is to follow along the lines of the recent WALLANDER series and produce three individual stories. No word on what novels will be used. In the U.S., the shows will air on Masterpiece Theater on public televion.

My own introduction to Zen came with the excellent 1996 novel COSI FAN TUTTI.

Filming will start this spring.