Producer Siddharth Roy Kapur has purchased the exclusive screen rights to William Dalrymple’s 2019 best-seller The Anarchy: The Relentless Rise of the East India Company, Deadline reported. Kapur is reportedly planning to turn the non-fiction book into a series meant for either an online platform or television.
“It would be great to get a collaborative, cross-cultural writers room in place, where you have talent from the US and the UK as well as India, sitting together,” Roy Kapur told Deadline. “The Indian writers will be able to bring their very local perspective, flavour, texture, character, and when it comes to structure, something of this magnitude, a lot of help can come from writers in the West who are trained in doing that.”
The Anarchy follows the evolution of the British East India Company from a trading corporation into a violent and crafty colonial force that went on to establish an empire in the Indian subcontinent.
Dalyrymple chronicles the Company’s modest origins conquering territories with a private militia “twice the size of the British army” and its subsequent takedown of the Mughal empire, despite being a London-based organisation with “one small office, five windows wide, and answerable only to its distant shareholders”.