Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London is a book series that blends magic and policing and follows the protagonist, Peter Grant, a probationary police constable who dreams of becoming a detective. Soon, Peter discovers a whole host of criminals, ghosts and wizards in the hidden depths of London and his own magical abilities that allow him to speak to the recently departed.
Aaronovitch has so far written eight books in the series and now there’s an exciting new announcement for fans of Rivers of London. Stolen Pictures, the production company set up by Nick Frost and Simon Pegg, of the Cornetto Trio (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead and The World’s End) Fame, have optioned the magical crime-fiction fantasy series to be adapted for TV. Nick Frost told Deadline that he read the first book (known as Midnight Riot in the U.S.) on holiday, he explained, “Suddenly we were in a position where I said ‘there’s this book that I loved’ and it became available, more or less. I was chuffed to bits that I could get the rights to make it into a TV show.”
Fans will also be pleased to hear that the author himself will also be involved in the production as executive producer, which always bodes well for book adaptations. Aaronovitch told Deadline, “I’ve worked in television before so I was wary of sticking my head back into that lion’s den. It was a difficult thing to sell so that it wouldn’t get horribly butchered, and television up to now has had a lot of difficulties. [But] how could I say no [to Pegg and Frost]? I feel confident on several levels. I’m working with creators and I know these people don’t like bollocks. There will be creative conflicts and where external forces force us to make compromises but I know that the starting point is that we won’t make those compromises unless we have to. [Simon and Nick] are tremendous nerds and I don’t have to explain things to do them about magic, they just get it. we have a common language, which we don’t have in a lot of TV companies.”
While Simon Pegg added, “As a writer, I understand what it’s like for someone to use you as a springboard rather than use your vision and it’s good to have writers involved as producers because they get it and we want to make a faithful adaptation that is a true reflection of the book.”
For those who haven’t read the books, fantasy author, Diana Gabaldon notes that “Midnight Riot is what would happen if Harry Potter grew up and joined the Fuzz. It is a hilarious, keenly imagined caper.” And, with Peter Grant under the care of Frost and Pegg he’ll soon be joining the ‘Hot Fuzz’ and we already have visions of him striding around London, Cornetto in hand.