The movie version of Thomas Hardy’s 19th-century literary classic Far From the Madding Crowd will star Michael Sheen and Carey Mulligan. Production started this week, and the film will be shot in rural British locations like Dorset, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

Michael SheenMichael Sheen is a busy man

Directing the film will be Thomas Vinterberg, the Danish director who gained notoriety by co-founding the avant-garde filmmaking movement: Dogme 95. He received critical acclaim for his 2012 feature The Hunt, about a man wrongly accused of paedophilia. Allon Reich and Andrew Macdonald of DNA Films are producing with Christine Langan of BBC Films stepping into the role of exec producer.

Director Vinterberg said of the project: “It is a great privilege to bring such a wonderful piece of very English literature to the screen.” Andrew Macdonald said: “Far From The Madding Crowd is one of the most enduring and captivating stories in English literature. David Nicholls' script beautifully captures the heart of Hardy’s original and we are thrilled to be bringing it to the big screen with Thomas Vinterberg. Christine Langan added: “Mulligan is the perfect Bathsheba”. (Wales Online)

Sheen has been busy on his latest show, Masters of Sex, which tells the story of a pair of pioneering researchers, who look into human sexuality in America. They were responsible for a large move forward in the diagnosis and treatment of sexual disorders in the late 1950s.

Carey MulliganCarey Mulligan will play Bathsheba Everdeen

"Obviously sex plays a large part in the show,” explained Sheen of his role, which you can see on Channel 4, although no release date is confirmed. "The most important thing is for the audience to relate. Rather than it being titillating or idealised, it should be something they can relate to. It's not that [the story] stops and there's a sex scene, then we go back to the story; the story is being told through the sex scene.”