The BBC adaptation, which includes Imelda Staunton and Judi Dench among its cast members, managed to outperform ITV1's usually dominant I'm A Celebrity, which instead had to settle for 7.2 million (26%) in the 9pm hour. BBC Two's Long Way Down also put in a good performance with 3.9 million and a 14% share.
The documentary followed on from Top Gear, which had a stellar 6.6 million (23%) at 8pm, ahead of BBC One's Antiques Roadshow (5.9m, 21%) but behind ITV1's Heartbeat (7.6m, 27%).
Elsewhere, Five enjoyed success earlier in the day with its showing of Matilda. The movie, based on the Roald Dahl children's book, averaged 3.3 million (16%) between 5pm and 7pm.