British author J.K. Rowling's first adult novel The Casual Vacancy will be adapted for the small screen, the BBC announced on Monday (Tuesday NZ time), unlike her Harry Potter adventures which went on to become one of the biggest film franchises of all time.
Public broadcaster BBC One and BBC Drama have commissioned the exclusive adaptation from The Blair Partnership literary agency which represents the author. The series is expected to air in 2014.
Rowling will collaborate "closely" on the project, with the number and length of episodes to be decided once the adaptation has formally begun.
"I always felt that, if it were to be adapted, this novel was best suited to television and I think the BBC is the perfect home," Rowling said in a statement.
Danny Cohen, controller of BBC One, said the project "highlights the ambition and scale of BBC One Drama, as well as the ability of modern television to attract the world's biggest talent and most exciting creative ideas."
The Casual Vacancy, which examines the clash of ideals, classes and generations in the seemingly sleepy English town of Pagford, has topped the bestseller lists in several countries, although it did not match the success of the Potter phenomenon.