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The Trout author Peter Cunningham hooks major screen deal

Bestselling author Peter Cunningham launches his new novel The Trout at Hodges Figgis on 31 August. The book, just selected as Bord Gáis Book Club’s Book of the Month, is already generating a good deal of interest, not least from UK screen producer Cameron Maxwell Lewis, who is travelling to Dublin for the launch party. Not only will he be getting his signed copy of The Trout but he will also be signing a deal with Peter Cunningham for a TV mini-series on The Taoiseach, Cunningham’s bestselling novel based on the life of former Irish Taoiseach Charles J. Haughey.


Maxwell Lewis has worked in the TV and film industry for thirty years, and his portfolio includes Cannonball Run, High Road to China, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and cult classics such as Christiane F. He’ll be travelling to the Ireland with screenwriter Graham Baker. Baker worked as a Hollywood director (Omen 3, Impulse, Alienation, Born to Ride) before developing his screenwriting career.

While in Ireland they will be discussing script development for The Taoiseach and looking at shooting locations for it.

Peter Cunningham says ‘I'm thrilled to be launching The Trout and signing a screen deal for The Taoiseach on the same day.’


Cameron Maxwell Lewis says, ‘The Taoiseach is a powerful and compelling, often humorous and always gripping tale of power and money, and the bonds that bind us, set in Ireland but with a universal and timeless theme. It lends itself to being retold as a six-hour miniseries where both the characters and the plot can fully develop and unfold in a way that cannot happen in a feature length movie.

‘Funnily enough it was in Ireland that I got my first taste of the film business - as an extra on Where’s Jack (1968), directed by James Clavell, and shot at the Ardmore Studios in Bray.

‘I have enjoyed all the Peter Cunningham novels I have read and I am looking forward to The Trout. We’ll be raising a glass to it at Hodges Figgis – and there might be a chance of an autographed copy of the new book!’

Notes for editors:

About The Trout (2016, Sandstone Press)

Described by Dermot Bolger as ‘a mesmerising read,’ The Trout, goes right to the heart of an issue that has engulfed modern Ireland. (Sandstone Press, paperback original, August 2016, £8.99 stg.)

For Alex and Kay in Canada, normal life is only a surface veneer, a thin casing covering a world of childhood secrets and lies from the land they left behind. In a spellbinding story of one man’s search for the crucial secret locked away in his memory since childhood, The Trout bursts through the conventions and falsehoods of the past and hangs, beautiful and shimmering, in the clear light of truth.

About The Taoiseach (2004)

In Ireland in the second half of the twentieth century, a corrupt circle of politicians and shadowy business figures control the levers of power. To read this novel is to understand how it all happened. And why.

About Peter Cunningham

Peter Cunningham is from Waterford in the south east of Ireland. He is the author of the Monument series, widely acclaimed novels set in a fictional version of his home town. His novel, The Taoiseach was a controversial best seller, and his novels have won a number of awards including including the prestigious Prix de l'Europe in 2014. He is a member of Aosdána, the Irish academy of arts and letters.

About Graham Baker

Graham Baker’s career began with Leaving Lily, which he wrote, directed and produced and won the short film award at the Chicago Film Festival and was aired twice by the BBC. He then became known primarily as the director of several Hollywood pictures, including Omen 3 – The Final Conflict, Impulse, Alienation (all for 20th Century Fox) Born to Ride for Warner Bros and several TV projects including Amazing Stories for Steven Spielberg. His activities as a writer have recently produced Sweet Tooth, a film scheduled for production in the USA in May 2017 with Walter Hill directing; A State of Denmark, an adaptation of the novel by Derek Raymond, performed at RADA in February and currently being developed for the screen; Dark City, an original screenplay, a film noir set in Paris in 1946, loosely based on the story of the black novelist Richard Wright.

About Cameron Maxwell Lewis

Cameron Maxwell Lewis is an international media lawyer and producer with over 30 years’ extensive experience in the UK, Europe, the United States and Asia. As a young agent in Hollywood he handled actors including Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger, as well as film and television directors and producers.

As head of Business Affairs at Golden Harvest he oversaw, drafted and negotiated finance, production and distribution deals for major movies such as Cannonball Run, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, High Road to China as well as cult classics such as Christiane F.

In Hong Kong he co-founded and was Managing Director of EZTV which became the first broadcaster over the AsiaSat 1 footprint, bringing the first music television channel to 2 billion viewers in Asia, and now an integral part of Star TV.

After launching CNBC Europe for the NBC network and running Business Affairs for all NBC operations in Europe, Cameron formed his own production company and exec produced a number of factual shows for ITV and for Sky TV, including Dream Ticket, Summer Dream Ticket and Breakaway.

He has also been General Counsel for FIFA marketing partner ISL where he oversaw all TV broadcast and marketing agreements for the FIFA World Cup, UEFA Champions League, ATP tennis, etc, and was for many years standing outside counsel for IFPI in Asia.

He is a co-founder of Qwerty Media. For further details of his career, see the full biography on the Qwerty Media website:

Peter Cunningham

Peter Cunningham