Sanditon stars warn raunchy new ITV adaptation of Jane Austen’s final novel is ‘not for purists’3 min read

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Sanditon stars warn raunchy new ITV adaptation of Jane Austen’s final unfinished novel is ‘not for purists’

The new ITV adaptation of Jane Austen’s Sanditon has been hotly anticipated. 

Yet the stars of Andrew Davies’s sexed-up drama have admitted that the forthcoming episodes risk offending purists.

Sanditon was Austen’s final and incomplete novel, which was written just months before the author’s death in 1817. 

One to watch: The new ITV adaptation of Jane Austen's Sanditon has been hotly anticipated. Yet the stars of the drama have admitted that the forthcoming episodes risk offending purists

One to watch: The new ITV adaptation of Jane Austen’s Sanditon has been hotly anticipated. Yet the stars of the drama have admitted that the forthcoming episodes risk offending purists

As it prepares to hit screens, Kris Marshall who plays Tom Parker, the architect developing Sanditon into a Regency resort, said he believes Davies has made it more accessible to a male audience.

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He explained: ‘I found it quite difficult. It takes time to tune into her vernacular, but Andrew makes it more accessible to an audience, especially a male audience. I think people will really engage with this.’

The 46-year-old actor, who starred in Death In Paradise, added that some Austen fans might not enjoy the direction in which Davies takes the story.

He said: ‘Obviously there are purists out there. If they don’t like it, that’s fine. Everyone is entitled to their opinion.’ 

Novel: The adaptation tells the story of impulsive, spirited and unconventional Charlotte Hayward (Rose Williams), and her spiky relationship with the charming yet wild Sidney Parker

Novel: The adaptation tells the story of impulsive, spirited and unconventional Charlotte Hayward (Rose Williams), and her spiky relationship with the charming yet wild Sidney Parker

Even Davies – who was behind the BBC’s 1995 adaptation of Pride And Prejudice – confesses that the show is ‘Jane Austen, but not as you knew her’. 

Anne Reid, 84, who plays the wealthy Lady Denham, added: ‘Unless you’re a real Austen fan, you wouldn’t know this book like her others. 

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‘We moved away from Jane Austen and on to Andrew Davies quite quickly. But I hope the purists will not disapprove of what Andrew has done.’

Masculine: Kris Marshall who plays Tom Parker, the architect developing Sanditon into a Regency resort, said he believes Davies has made it more accessible to a male audience

Masculine: Kris Marshall who plays Tom Parker, the architect developing Sanditon into a Regency resort, said he believes Davies has made it more accessible to a male audience

The new series will include naked men, a sex act in the woods – and even a Daniel Craig-style shot of the hero emerging from the sea – something which Austen fans may feel couldn’t possibly have been written by her.

Last month Davies admitted: ‘I write something that I would like to watch and I suppose the “sexing it up” thing comes in fairly naturally.’    

The adaptation tells the story of impulsive, spirited and unconventional Charlotte Hayward (Rose Williams), and her spiky relationship with the charming yet wild Sidney Parker (Theo James).

When a chance accident transports her from her rural home town of Willingden to the coastal resort of the title, it exposes Charlotte to the intrigues and dalliances of a seaside town on the make, and the characters whose fortunes depend on its commercial success.

The twists and turns of the plot, which takes viewers from the West Indies to the rotting alleys of London, exposes the hidden agendas of each character and sees Charlotte discover herself and ultimately find love. 

Sanditon will premiere on Sunday August 25 on ITV at 9pm.

Pop it in the planner: Sanditon will premiere on Sunday August 25 on ITV at 9pm

Pop it in the planner: Sanditon will premiere on Sunday August 25 on ITV at 9pm

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