'Fleabag's Andrew Scott to Star in Showtime's 'Ripley'

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Fleabag and Sherlock alum Andrew Scott has signed on to play grifter Tom Ripley in Showtime's eight-part drama, Ripley, the network announced Wednesday.

Set in 1960s New York, the show is based on Patricia Highsmith's bestselling books.

Steven Zaillian, whose credits include Schindler's List and The Night Of, will write and direct the first season of Ripley.

"We are so thrilled to have the supremely talented filmmaker, Steve Zaillian, adapt the singular saga of Tom Ripley from Patricia Highsmith's novels as an ongoing series for Showtime," Gary Levine, Showtime's president of entertainment, said in a statement on Wednesday. "With Andrew Scott, whose charisma knows no bounds, inhabiting the iconic lead role, we feel confident that this will be a special one."

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The actor and series creator/star Phoebe Waller-Bridge drew on their natural chemistry as longtime pals.

The story opens with Ripley being hired by a wealthy man who wants him to convince his son to return home from Italy.

"Tom's acceptance of the job is the first step into a complex life of deceit, fraud, and murder," a synopsis said.

Scott's other credits include Pride, His Dark Materials, Black Mirror, Spectre, King Lear, The Hour, The Stag, Foyle's War, John Adams, and Lennon Naked.

The role of Tom Ripley was previously played by Alain Delon in 1960's Purple Noon, Dennis Hopper in 1977's The American Friend, Matt Damon in 1999's The Talented Mr. Ripley, John Malkovich in 2002's Ripley's Game, and Barry Pepper in 2005's Ripley Under Ground.

By Karen Butler

Originally published in UPI Entertainment News.