Hilary Mantel: Which of Wolf Hall author’s books were adapted for the screen and stage?

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Hilary Mantel’s legendary works of historical fiction lived lives on the screen and stage as well as on the page.

The Wolf Hall author died on Thursday (22 September), prompting outpourings of grief and tributes from across the literary world.

Mantel was interested in the idea of adapting one’s work for the screen and in 2017, delivered one of the Reith Lectures on BBC Radio 4 on the topic of adapting work for stage and screen.

When it came to her 1998 book The Giant, O’Brien, which was set in the 1780s and based on the real life of “freak show” exhibition Charles Byrne, Mantel did the adapting herself.

The author turned the book into a play for BBC Radio 4, which starred Alex Norton as Scottish surgeon John Hunter. Frances Tomelty also starred.

Wolf Hall, Mantel’s most famous book, was released in 2009 to critical acclaim and commercial success.

A sequel, titled Bring Up the Bodies, and third book, titled The Mirror and the Light, followed in 2012 and 2020 respectively.

In 2015, the BBC adapted the first two Wolf Hall trilogy novels into a six-episode series starring Mark Rylance as Cromwell, Damien Lewis as Henry VIII and Claire Foy as Anne Boleyn.

Mantel in 2015 (Getty Images)
Mantel in 2015 (Getty Images)

Mark Gatiss, Jonathan Pryce, Tom Holland and Thomas Brodie-Sangster also starred in the series.

All three books were also given the stage treatment by the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Wolf Hall Parts One and Two was a double bill based on the first two books, while The Mirror and The Light was given its own adaptation last year.