Monday, April 12, 2010

Ridley Scott Partners On "Pompeii"

Sony Pictures Television will partner on "Pompeii", a four-hour miniseries adaptation of author Robert Harris' historical novel with Ridley and Tony Scott's Scott Free Television, Tandem Communications and Peace Out Productions.

First published by Random House in 2003, "Pompeii" is a blend of fictional characters with the real-life eruption of Mount Vesuvius, August 24, 79 that overwhelmed the city and its surrounding towns.

In the book, 'Marcus Attilius Primus' arrives in the Bay of Naples from Rome to take charge as the 'aquarius' (hydraulic engineer) of the Aqua Augusta, an aqueduct that supplies water to Pompeii and eight other towns along the Bay of Neapolis, (ancient term for the Bay of Naples). When the flow of water stops entirely. Attilius concludes the aqueduct must be blocked somewhere close to Mount Vesuvius and with the assistance of Pliny the Elder, whose fleet is docked at Misenum, assembles an expedition to travel to Pompeii and then on to the blocked section of the Aqua Augusta.

Attilius then becomes embroiled in a plot of former slave and land speculator 'Numerius Popidius Ampliatus' to become the provider of low-cost water to Pompeii, which 'Exomnius', the previous aquarius, helped him do while stealing from the imperial treasury.

Then Mount Vesuvius erupts on August 24, destroying Pompeii, Oplontis, and Herculaneum.

"'Pompeii' is a strong and compelling character drama set against a backdrop of a flourishing but ultimately doomed civilization," said Ridley Scott.

"Exactly what makes great event television..."