Vera Farmiga
and Freddie Highmore will star in Bates Motel - which will premiere on US channel A&E in early 2013.

Not to be confused with the questionable 1987 TV movie spin off of the same name, the ten part series will act as a prequel to Hitchcock's 1960 film, focusing on Norman Bates' childhood with his rather overbearing mother. You might recall what happened to her…

According to Digital Spy, the series will also star "Lost's Nestor Carbonell, Pan Am's Mike Vogel, Once Upon a Time's Keegan Connor Tracy and Caprica's Richard Harmon. A&E president Bob DeBitetto has promised that the prequel series - from former Lost producer Carlton Cuse - will be 'edgy, provocative and different'."

The premise for the '87 TV movie had quite the edgy premise. It starred Bud Cort as a "man who roomed with Norman Bates at the state lunatic asylum for nearly 20 years. After Bates' death, Alex finds that he is in Norman's will as the inheritor of the Bates Motel, which has been vacant since Norman's arrest. Alex travels to Bates' California hometown (which this film has renamed Fairville from the original film's Fairvale) and with a little help from a teenage runaway, Willie (Lori Petty), Alex struggles to re-open the motel for business, only to have strange things happen. Is someone trying to drive him away, or is the motel really haunted by the ghost of Norman's mother?"

Channel 4 producers would be all over that concept. Expect it to grace next year's Autumn/Winter schedule featuring Ruth Watson as Mama Bates' ghost, who could also impart handy hints on how to re-market the establishment; Sarah Beeney as the lone guest/booby shower fodder who can knock through a wall if needs be; and George Clark as Bud Cort's character. Not entirely sure we need a teenage runaway, but the interchangeable and recently discarded cast of Skins would be ripe for the picking. Don't worry, Heston, you could be drafted in as the Motel's chef; Gordon's already filled his boots with Hotel GB