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MY BRILLIANT FRIEND (2018): First Four Episodes Plot Synopses & Air Dates of HBO’s Post-world War TV Series

Elisa del Genio Ludovica Nasti My Brilliant Friend

My Brilliant Friend First Four Episode Plot Synopses and Air Dates

A press release has been issued for My Brilliant Friend / L’amica geniale, which will airs on HBO. The press release consists of the plot synopses of the first four episodes of Season 1 of My Brilliant Friend entitled The Dolls, The Money, The Metamorphosis, and Dissolving Margins. The trailer can be viewed here.

The contents of that press release can be found below.

My Brilliant Friend Press Release

When the most important friend in her life seems to have disappeared without a trace, Elena Greco, a now-elderly woman immersed in a house full of books, turns on her computer and starts writing the story of their friendship. She met Raffaella Cerullo, whom she has always called Lila, in the first year of primary school in 1950. Set in a dangerous and fascinating Naples, their story goes on to cover more than 60 years of their lives as she tries to describe the mystery of Lila, Elena’s brilliant friend and – in a way – both her best friend and her worst enemy.

The eight-episode HBO, RAI FICTION and TIMVISION drama series MY BRILLIANT FRIEND debuts SUNDAY, NOV. 18 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), with the second episode debuting MONDAY, NOV. 19 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), followed by other episodes subsequent Sundays and Mondays at the same time.
Based on Elena Ferrante’s bestselling book of the same name, which is the first of her four-part series published in the U.S. by Europa Editions, MY BRILLIANT FRIEND was filmed in Italian and stars newcomers Elisa Del Genio and Ludovica Nasti as the younger versions of Elena and Lila, while Margherita Mazzucco and Gaia Girace portray teenage versions of the characters. The show is directed by Saverio Costanzo (“Private,” “The Solitude of Prime Numbers,” “Hungry Hearts”).

The series will also be available on HBO NOW, HBO GO, HBO On Demand and partners’ streaming platforms.
Casting for the show took place over a period of eight months, with more than 8,000 children and 500 adults from the Campania region of Southern Italy auditioning. The casting process included professional and non-professional actors, as well as students recruited from local schools. In total, MY BRILLIANT FRIEND includes a cast of more than 150 actors and 5,000 extras.

The production’s construction team of 150 crew members created 215,000 square feet of sets, which were built over 100 days. To recreate the neighborhood, the symbolic location of the story, they built 14 exterior apartment buildings, five interior sets of apartments, a church and a tunnel. The costume department gathered 1,500 costumes, many of which were original creations. MY BRILLIANT FRIEND wrapped production in Caserta, Italy, earlier this year.

November’s episodes:

Episode #1: “The Dolls”
Debut: SUNDAY, NOV. 18 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT)
The disappearance of her old friend, Lila Cerrullo, causes 60-year-old author Elena Greco (Elisabetta De Palo) to reflect on the early days of their friendship in 1950s Naples, when Elena (Elisa Del Genio) and Lila (Ludovica Nasti) are two very different girls at the top of their class. When the girls discover the underground lair of Don Achille (Antonio Pennarella), a criminal figure who controls the neighborhood, they decide to confront him, facing their fears together and laying the cornerstone of a lasting friendship and rivalry.
Written by Elena Ferrante, Francesco Piccolo, Laura Paolucci and Saverio Costanzo; directed by Saverio Costanzo.

Episode #2: “The Money”
Debut: MONDAY, NOV. 19 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
As fourth grade draws to an end, Elena (Elisa Del Genio) and Lila (Ludovica Nasti) fight with their families for the chance to continue their education. Later, a trip out of town becomes a day Elena will never forget, and a death changes things in the neighborhood forever.
Written by Elena Ferrante, Francesco Piccolo, Laura Paolucci and Saverio Costanzo; directed by Saverio Costanzo.

Episode #3: “The Metamorphosis”
Debut: SUNDAY, NOV. 25 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Now a teenager, Elena (Margherita Mazzucco) grapples with the onset of puberty, her studies and her friendship with Lila (Gaia Girace), who now works in her family’s shoe-repair store. After a library awards ceremony reveals what Lila has been keeping secret, Elena learns what her friend’s grand plans might be. As the girls’ encounters with the opposite sex become more frequent, Lila takes a stand against the dangerous Solara brothers (Elvis Esposito, Alessio Gallo).
Written by Elena Ferrante, Francesco Piccolo, Laura Paolucci and Saverio Costanzo; directed by Saverio Costanzo.

Episode #4: “Dissolving Margins”
Debut: MONDAY, NOV. 26 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Entering high school, Elena (Margherita Mazzucco) vows to stay ahead of Lila (Gaia Girace), academically and romantically. Lila eschews a parade of suitors vying for her affection, choosing instead to focus on her ambitions in the shoe shop. Promising a better future for the neighborhood, Stefano Carracci (Giovanni Amura) invites Elena, Lila and their families over for New Year’s Eve. Things escalate quickly during a fireworks faceoff with the Solaras (Elvis Esposito, Alessio Gallo), leading Lila to see a new side of her brother Rino (Gennaro De Stefano).
Written by Elena Ferrante, Francesco Piccolo, Laura Paolucci and Saverio Costanzo; directed by Saverio Costanzo.

MY BRILLIANT FRIEND is an HBO-RAI Fiction and TIMVISION series, based on the bestselling novel “My Brilliant Friend,” the first of the quadrilogy by Elena Ferrante published in the U.S. by Europa Editions; a Wildside-Fandango Production; produced by Lorenzo Mieli and Mario Gianani for Wildside and by Domenico Procacci for Fandango, in collaboration with RAI Fiction, TIMVISION and HBO Entertainment and in co-production with Umedia. All episodes are directed by Saverio Costanzo. The story and screenplays are by Elena Ferrante, Francesco Piccolo, Laura Paolucci and Saverio Costanzo. Paolo Sorrentino and Jennifer Schuur are the executive producers. Fremantle is the international distributor in association with RAI Com.

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