The first teaser has been released for a new version of Jules Verne’s classic Around The World In 80 Days. Former Doctor Who David Tennant takes on the famous lead role of gentleman adventurer Phileas Fogg.
The eight-part series will feature French actor Ibrahim Koma as Fogg’s valet Passepartout. The character of Scotland Yard Detective Fix will be replaced by Leonie Benesch as journalist Abigail ‘Fix’ Fortescue.
It does have a promising lineage. The book is a classic, Tennant is uniformly good and it hails from Life On Mars and Ashes to Ashes creator Ashley Pharoah, who is also head writer on the series. It is a combined effort between British and French broadcasters, with France Televisions, PBS/Masterpiece, the BBC, RAI and ZDF all already committed to broadcast around the world. There is no premier date set yet.
Of course, if you are a certain age then you know there is one adaption that will never, ever be bested.
Le tour du monde en quatre-vingts jours was first published in French in 1872. In the story, Phileas Fogg of London and his newly employed French valet Passepartout attempt to circumnavigate the world in 80 days.
This is as part of a gentleman bet, made by Fogg with his fellow members at the Reform Club in London. The £20,000 is equivalent to £1.9 million today. $2.6 million.
The linking of the Indian railways and the opening of the Suez canal made Verne, a Frenchman, jealous of British innovation and global reach. This inspired him to write what many believe is his best book.
The period Verne describes is often considered the final days of exploration and adventure in that it was no longer needed to mount an expedition with local guides to travel, so it effectively marked the very beginnings of tourism as we know it.