The Danish fimmaker Thomas Vinterberg is in talks with the British production company DNA to direct a new version of Thomas Hardy’s 1874 “Far From the Madding Crowd,” his fourth novel and his first major success. According to The Wrap, Carey Mulligan is apparently being sought for the lead role of Bathsheba Everdene, played by Julie Christie in John Schlesinger’s 1967 version.
The script will be written by David Nicholls, who wrote the 2008 BBC adaptation of Hardy’s “Tess of the d’Urbervilles” and the upcoming Mike Newell film of “Great Expectations.”
“Far From the Madding Crowd” is about the attraction of the vain and proud (but inherently virtuous) independent farmer Bathsheba for three men in a fictitious county like Dorset, in Hardy’s mythical Wessex. For the abusive and reckless Sergeant Troy and the prosperous older farmer William Boldwood, her allure proves tragic.
Her most steadfast advocate and her soulmate is the shepherd Gabriel Oak, who becomes her second husband after Troy. Although “Far From the Madding Crowd” is a romantic tragedy, it is less fatalistic and more optimistic in tone than “Tess,” “Jude the Obscure,” or “The Mayor of Casterbridge.”