By Jennifer Armstrong
Updated June 09, 2009 at 04:51 PM EDT

Donald Sutherland, Ian McShane, and Rufus Sewell will star in Pillars of the Earth, a smallscreen adaptation of the historical novel that will play as a Thornbirds-style miniseries event, according to The Hollywood Reporter. But while most large European stations have signed on to air the film — produced by Munich-based TandemCommunications and Montreal-based Muse Entertainment — so far there are no takers stateside or in the U.K. The eight-hour series based on Ken Follett’s bestseller, which is set in 12th Century England among war and religious strife, will be directed by Sergio Mimica-Gezzan (Heroes, Saving Grace). It starts shooting June 22 in Hungary and Austria, with a premiere date of late 2010. McShane will play Waleran;Donald Sutherland, Bartholomew; and Rufus Sewell,Tom Builder. The cast also includes Matthew Macfadyenas Prior Philip, Sarah Parish asRegan Hamleigh, Hayley Atwell as Aliena,Eddie Redmayne as Jack, and Gordon Pinsentas the Archbishop. John Pielmeier, who adapted the novel for the screen, will also play the role of Cuthbert.

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