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HBO and Rai announced today that they have renewed the hit Italian drama My Brilliant Friend for a fourth and final season.

My Brilliant Friend
My Brilliant Friend: Gaia Girace as Lila, Margherita Mazzucco as Elena — Photo by Eduardo Castaldo/HBO

Making the announcement were Francesca Orsi, Executive Vice President, HBO Programming, and Maria Pia Ammirati, Rai head of Drama.

Season 4 will be based on the novel The Story of the Lost Child, the fourth and final title in Elena Ferrante’s best-selling “Neapolitan Novels” quadrilogy, and is a The Apartment, Fremantle Italy, Wildside and Fandango production. Lorenzo Mieli produces for Fremantle Italy, The Apartment and Wildside (both Fremantle companies), and Domenico Procacci produces for Fandango, in collaboration with Rai Fiction and HBO Entertainment.

(The third season, My Brilliant Friend: Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay, premiered in the US on February 28 on HBO and will complete on April 18. Seasons 1-3 are also available for streaming on HBO Max.)

Said Francesca Orsi:

“When we decided to bring Elena Ferrante’s masterpiece Neapolitan Novels to the screen, we knew Elena and Lila’s story had to be told in its entirety. It’s both thrilling and bittersweet to embark on this fourth and final season. We’re deeply grateful to the entire creative team led by Saverio Costanzo and Lorenzo Mieli, and to our season 3 director Daniele Luchetti. We look forward to completing the quartet and know ‘The Story of the Lost Child’ will bring the series to a close with the same heart, intimacy, and epic storytelling that has defined Elena and Lila’s journey from the beginning.

Maria Pia Ammirati stated:

My Brilliant Friend is an asset that has proven the success of our production partnership with HBO Entertainment, Fandango, Fremantle, The Apartment and Wildside. What lies behind this success is the precious opportunity offered by Elena Ferrante’s four Neapolitan Novels and the realistic, exciting and originally Italian imagery that has brought to life the audio-visual transposition of the friendship between Lila and Lenù. This mix between a strongly characterized environment, marked first of all by the dialect, then by its humanity and by the emotions heightened through the power of a female friendship, has proved to be a driving force for seriality, as well as a showcase for the creativity and expertise of Italy’s audio-visual industry. Our aim is to maximize this in the wake of a now well-established cooperation full of prospects.”

My Brilliant Friend (L’amica geniale) tells the story of Elena Greco and the most important friend in her life: Raffaella Cerullo, whom she met in 1950 in the first year of primary school and has been calling Lila ever since. Set in the dangerous and fascinating world of Naples, their story covers more than 60 years of their lives and explores the mystery of Lila, Elena’s brilliant friend and, in a way, both her best friend and her worst enemy.

Starring Margherita Mazzucco and Gaia Girace, Season 3 follows Elena and Lila, both grown women, during the 1970s. Lila took her young son and left her husband and a comfortable life to work as a factory worker in the toughest of conditions, while Elena left the neighborhood to study in Pisa, and is now an author of a successful novel that has paved the way to an affluent and cultivated world. They now navigate a scenario of hopes and uncertainties, still united by their strong and ambivalent bond.

Created by Saverio Costanzo, the series’ story and screenplays are by Elena Ferrante, Francesco Piccolo, Laura Paolucci, and Saverio Costanzo. Paolo Sorrentino and Jennifer Schuur are the executive producers, amongst others.

Stay tuned for updates.


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My Brilliant Friend: HBO & Rai Renew Italian Drama for Fourth & Final Season
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