By Michael Gioia
28 Jun 2011
"World Without End," the follow-up to "The Pillars of the Earth," is adapted from Ken Follett's 2007 novel by the same name and is set in England 200 years after the events in "Pillars" when the Church of England is teetering on the brink of a devastating 100-year war with France, and Europe is bracing for a terrible plague, which will wipe out a third of the continent's population. The story centers on Caris, played by Riley, a visionary woman who, with her lover Merthin, builds a community that stands up to the Crown and the Church.
Nixon will play Petranilla, Firth will play the ruthless Earl Roland, and Chaplin will play Sir Thomas Langley. Also in the cast are Tom Weston-Jones, Miranda Richardson as Mother Cecilia, Rupert Evans as Godwyn, Nora von Waldstaetten as Gwenda, Oliver Jackson-Cohen as Ralph, Megan Follows as Maud and Sarah Gadon as Philippa.
Filming on the $44 million project will take five months and will begin July 11 in Hungary. "World Without End" is produced by Tandem Communications and Ridley and Tony Scott’s Scott Free Prods.
Nixon won the Tony Award in 2006 for her performance in Rabbit Hole. Firth was nominated for a Tony in 1975 for his performance in Equus, and Chaplin received a Tony nomination in 2004 for The Retreat From Moscow. Riley, seen in the film "Wuthering Heights," appeared in The Priory at the Royal Court Theatre in 2009.