TWO fantasy tales inspired by Oxford are being made into blockbusters for the small screen by a Welsh production company.

Cardiff-based Bad Wolf is making A Discovery of Witches for Sky 1, followed by episodes of the acclaimed Philip Pullman trilogy His Dark Materials, expected to be shown on the BBC.

Matthew Goode, who starred in the Netflix series The Crown, has been spotted filming scenes for the witches drama in Oxford, including at Folly Bridge.

The actor stars alongside Hacksaw Ridge actress Teresa Palmer in the dramatisation of Deborah Harkness’s bestselling novels.

Goode plays enigmatic geneticist and vampire Matthew Clairmont, who attempts to understand the secrets of an ancient manuscript in Oxford’s Bodleian Library. Miss Palmer plays historian Diana Bishop, a reluctant witch denying her heritage.

The drama is set in Oxford, Lapland, Scotland, Venice, London, France and New York, and is Bad Wolf’s first major production.

Ms Harkness said: “Teresa and Matthew perfectly capture my characters – I’m so excited by the casting and how they will bring the books to life.”

Jane Tranter, executive producer for Bad Wolf, added: “A Discovery of Witches is a bold contemporary love story beautifully adapted by Kate Brooke from the books by Deborah Harkness.

"We can’t wait to introduce fans of the novels to our cast and to bring in a whole new audience to these extraordinary stories.”

The international distribution rights for A Discovery of Witches will be handled by Sky Vision, Sky’s international production and distribution arm.

The series is expected to be shown later this year on Sky 1 and Now TV.

Work could start on the filming for His Dark Materials later this year, with Jack Thorne announced as the writer on drama series.

Reviews of The Golden Compass, the 2007 movie of Northern Lights, the first instalment of the trilogy were mixed.

Mr Thorne said: “It is such an honour and a privilege to be given this opportunity to delve into Philip Pullman’s world.

“What I always loved about Bad Wolf’s intentions with this project was the notion of sounding every note.

“The His Dark Materials trilogy are vast and glorious books full of beautiful characters and I’m going to work as hard as I can to try and do justice to them.”

Mr Pullman said: “Jack is a writer of formidable energy and range, and I’ve greatly enjoyed talking to him and learning about his plans for bringing His Dark Materials to the screen. I’m certain he’ll do a superb job.”

The fantasy trilogy featuring Lyra Belacqua has been published in more than 40 languages. The series will be executive produced by Mr Pullman, Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner for Bad Wolf, and Toby Emmerich for New Line Cinema.