HBO speaks Italian with Elena Ferrante's 'My Brilliant Friend'

Jul 30, 2018 1269

HBO's eight-episode "My Brilliant Friend" starts with a big plus. It's based on an acclaimed, best-selling novel by Elena Ferrante. But it also presents some challenges. It's the first foreign-language series for the pay-cable network — it will air with subtitles — and collaboration with Ferrante had to be done by e-mail, since the author, who writes using a pseudonym, keeps her identity secret.

In the story of two girls growing up in 1950s Naples, newcomers Elisa Del Genio and Ludovica Nasti play young Elena and Lila, with Gaia Girace and Margherita Mazzucco portraying them as teenagers. All four spoke in Italian during an HBO panel Wednesday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour.



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