Ian was primarily at the Edinburgh Book Festival to discuss his new book, In A House of Lies. From the reading he gave, we can see that Rebus has lost none of his wit, but his physical mettle is waning. Struggling with emphysema, as a result of COPD, he now finds stairs hard and looks for ways to make walking his dog, Brillo, easier.
Siobhan Clarke has a new boss and times are changing. Rankin worries that Edinburgh is too safe and that there may be more crime writers here than crimes, but it was the dual aspect of contemporary Edinburgh that made him want to write. A city that is by turns cultured but can also be savage. He is attracted by that Jekyll and Hyde nature and he turned to crime writing precisely because it can combine elements of both, most especially in his protagonist, Rebus. Ian Rankin could have followed Rebus’ path, but didn’t, though it was the route map for many working class males at the time – army, police force, some kind of enlistment that gave you a new family.
Rankin confirmed that a new television adaptation of his Rebus novels is in development, to be written by Black Watch playwright Gregory Burke.
“Last year a production company contacted me and said they would love to do Rebus properly, with six-eight-ten or more hour-long episodes,” Rankin said.
“He doesn’t know who will be cast as yet. I think they want to have a younger Rebus, so I don’t know whether it’ll be a project for Ken Stott or not,” he added. “If it happens at all, it’ll happen next year.”
There is also to be a stage play. Rankin has been working with acclaimed playwright Rona Munro on a new stage play titled Long Shadows, which will premiere at the Kings Theatre this October.
Set in the present day, the play will feature Rebus, Siobhan. Large and Big Ger Cafferty. Brillo, however, will not make an appearance.
Charles Lawson, (Jim McDonald in Coronation Street) is playing Rebus and Cathy Tyson takes the part of Siobhan Clarke.
One to watch out for. Hopefully it will tour….