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British and Russian spies at odds in new drama

Writer Tony Marchant

BBC One has commissioned a new 3-part adaptation of Joseph Conrad‘s classic spy novel The Secret Agent, to be written by BAFTA-winning writer Tony Marchant (Public Enemies, Garrow’s Law).

London, 1886. Unbeknown to his loyal wife Winnie, Soho shopkeeper Verloc works as a secret agent for the Russian government. Angry that Britain harbours violent anarchists, the Russians coerce Verloc into planting a bomb that will provoke the authorities into cracking down on these extremists. Caught between the Russians and the British police, Verloc reluctantly draws his own family into a tragic terror plot.

Tony Marchant says: “Conrad’s depiction of 19th century terrorists committed to the destruction of the West, with a suicide bomber in their midst, was not only prophetic but is undeniably contemporary and compelling. Equally it is a heartbreaking story of a family caught up in the political machinations of a world in ferment.”

The series is produced by World Productions (Line Of Duty), executive produced by Simon Heath for World Productions and Polly Hill for BBC One.