Political nirvana: House of Cards and Borgen creators team up on new project

Ian Richardson in the original House of Cards
Ian Richardson in the original House of Cards
Ian Dunt By

Lovers of political drama were enjoying all their Christmases at once today, after it emerged the creators of House of Cards and Borgen were teaming up on a major new project.

Michael Dobbs, who wrote the original House of Cards, and Adam Price, who created the Danish drama Borgen, will team up on the story of a widow of a British politician who goes into politics to continue his legacy, which is expected to be broadcast next year.

"Looking at it through female eyes can often bring out very different results than the traditional male eyes," Dobbs told The World This Weekend.

"I like strong female characters and Adam writes them brilliantly. The life of a woman in Westminster is often quite different than a man, and we could have much more fun with it."


The two men say they started discussing the idea when Dobbs was showing Pryce around the Palace of Westminster.

"A lot of people try to write political dramas without understanding what political life is all about," Dobbs said.

"They see the chamber of the House of Commons and that's it, but it's a very small part of the life of a politician.

"Westminster and the political world is a wonderful, colourful backdrop for drama, where a cauldron of emotion, ambition and loyalty come together and get swept around.

"I can't think of any other area of life where it happens to that extent.

"It's not going to be party political, but political with a big P. We want to take very serious issues of the current state of play in Britain and highlight one or two of them using the drama."

Dobbs said the combination of the two creators would be a "pretty good pedigree", but avid fans of political dramas would probably consider that an understatement.

The original House of Cards portrayed a Tory whip who used manipulation and underhand tactics to try to become party leader. It was a massive success in the 1990s and many of its elements are still cited in political circles.

An American version starring Kevin Spacey is currently showing on Netflix.

Borgen is currently the most popular political programme among those in Westminster, with many journalists, politicians and civil servants obsessing over the Danish show.

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