- 08 Dec 20
The first episode of the Sally Rooney adaptation was streamed 6,378,000 times in the UK alone.
The BBC has officially announced that its adaptation of Sally Rooney's Normal People was the most popular series of 2020 on the BBC iPlayer, accumulating over 62 million streams.
The Lenny Abrahamson-directed TV drama topped well-known shows Killing Eve (39,344,000 streams), MasterChef (22,206,000) and The Split (18,939,000) to nab the BBC's top spot.
The first episode of Normal People, starring Paul Mescal and Daisy Edgar-Jones, was streamed an incredible 6,378,000 times in the UK, excluding Ireland.
The drama focuses on the on-again off-again relationship between Sligo teenagers Marianne and Connell, beginning in their school days through to their time at Trinity College Dublin.
There were 5.3 billion streams overall on the BBC iPlayer this year, a rise of 33% on the same period last year and a new record for the broadcaster.
"It's pleasing to see the sensational adaptation of Sally Rooney's Normal People take top slot as the biggest series of the year and there have been other brand new drama series among the most popular, such as Michaela Coel's I May Destroy You, The Nest and The Secrets She Keeps as well as hugely popular returners like Killing Eve and The Split," Dan McGolpin, controller of BBC iPlayer, said.
Meanwhile, Abrahamson told Sunday with Miriam on RTÉ Radio 1 that he hopes to begin filming the adaptation of author Sally Rooney's debut novel, Conversations with Friends, "early next year".
Dublin company Element Pictures, the BBC and streaming service Hulu are all supporting the new series.
"We enjoyed making Normal People so much that we are lucky to be given the opportunity to make Conversations with Friends, which is Sally Rooney's first novel," the director commented.
"I am due to go into production with that early next year, kind of craziness and Covid-permitting. That would be the next one."