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Mermaid swims to Playground

The Mermaid & Mrs Hancock

Playground, the US- and UK-based drama producer founded by HBO alum Colin Callender, has picked up rights to a best-selling novel from Imogen Hermes Gowar for TV adaptation.

The Mermaid & Mrs Hancock is set in 1785 and tells the story of Jonah Hancock, a prosperous merchant and widower, whose captain returns having sold Hancock’s ship and cargo in exchange for a mermaid.

Playground has secured the film and TV rights to the book and Callender, who has previously produced on period dramas Wolf Hall and Howards End, will produce the adaptation.

Callender said: “In the tradition of Wolf Hall and Howards End, we at Playground are very excited to bring to the screen Imogen’s remarkable debut novel. We are honoured that she has entrusted us with her gloriously enthralling original story.”

The deal was brokered by Luke Speed of literary agency Curtis Brown Group on behalf of Karolina Sutton.


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