Ahead of The Little Drummer Girl’s first episode tonight, producer Stephen Cornwell has opened up about the important details viewers may miss.
Steven was part of the team who worked on the BBC’s other adaptation of a John Le Carre novel, The Night Manager.
While the BBC dramas will be compared, Steven pointed out a big difference regarding the team’s decision to keep the show as a period piece.
He explained they refused to change when it was set as it was important it stayed “true to the moment”.
Speaking to press including Express.co.uk, Stephen explained: “I think necessarily when working on an adaptation you explore those ideas and you really kind of imagine it in a way of how to bring things forward as with The Night Manager, which was very organic.
“I think we felt this absolutely had to sit in its time and we had to be true to that moment.
“It was a very specific period of time in terms of the context and the evolution of terrorism, of identity and of conflict in that period of time.”
He went on to add: “That speaks to Charlie’s journey.”
“I think the other thing that we felt within that was Charlie herself was a character,” Stephen continued.
“If we told it true to that period, and we told it true to the novel in that way, that we actually were speaking to a character that spoke very profoundly today and actually by being true to that we brought it into the present in very real ways.”
Young actress Florence Pugh stars as the enigmatic Charlie while Alexander Skarsgard takes on the role of Gadi Becker.
Gadi is an Israeli intelligence officer who recruits Charlie as she spends time in Greece.
Speaking about why Alexander was the top choice to play Becker, Stephen’s brother Simon explained: “The tension in what might be a burgeoning romance between him and Charlie is rain from it being held back.
“Alex is somebody who could deliver that.
“He has a sort of quiet intensity to his performance that made him very very natural for this and I mean, Michael Shannon is a gift.
“He unexpectedly became available during the casting process and we heard that on the grapevine and just like a rifle shot for Michael. He’s an extraordinary actor.”
The synopsis for the first episode reads: “Charlie, a fiery and brilliant young actress, meets a mysterious stranger on the beach in Greece.
“He draws her into an international espionage operation.”
Over the course of the next six weeks viewers will join the pair as they embark on a very dangerous mission.
The Little Drummer Girl airs tonight on BBC One at 9pm.