Many fine actors have been cast in new dramas headed to BBC and ITV, including Amelia Bullmore, Kevin Doyle, and Keeley Hawes. Read on to find out who else is returning to telly.
The epic Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf is the source material for this ITV 13-part drama with a star-studded international cast. Joining the previously-announced cast are Joe Sims, Lee Boardman, David Bradley, Ace Bhatti, and Gregory Fitoussi.
Sims (Broadchurch) appears in Episode 5 as Greff, a miner who spends his days digging for ore in the forests. While he appears to be the joker, this plucky miner is nobody’s fool. Boardman (Da Vinci’s Demons) is introduced in Episode 6 as Hane, Bregan’s Healer, a battlefield medic who is ambitious, tough, politically sagacious, and fiercely loyal.
Guest starring in Episode 9 is Bradley (Broadchurch), who plays tribe leader Gorrik, a proud and unforgiving man who values sincerity and truth, and wants only to provide for his family and people, as the needs of his community outweigh everything else. Bhatti (The Shadow Line) joins the cast in the same episode, playing Bregan councillor Harken, a wise and intelligent man with a great understanding of both military strategy and politics, but without a personal ambition and desire for power.
And French actor Gregory Fitoussi (Mr Selfridge) is introduced in Episode 10 as Razzak, a spice trader from the Farlands and a fiercely intelligent and inescapably magnetic figure.
On-location filming has started in England’s Northeast and continues until October. Beowulf is expected to premiere in 2016. No word yet on if it will screen in the US, so stay tuned.
Keeley Hawes (Line of Duty, Ashes to Ashes) is set to lead the cast of ITV’s new drama The Durrells. She will play Louisa Durrell in the new six-part series based on Gerald Durrell‘s classic trilogy of memoirs, including the much-loved My Family and Other Animals.
Joining Hawes as Louisa’s children are Josh O’Connor (Ripper Street) as 21-year-old Larry, newcomer Callum Woodhouse as 18-year-old Leslie, Daisy Waterstone (Silent Witness) as 17-year-old Margo, and Milo Parker (Mr Holmes) as 11-year-old Gerry.
Also in the international cast are the famed French actress Leslie Caron (Gigi, An American in Paris) as the shrewd and exotic Countess Mavrodaki; the popular Greek actors Alexis Georgoulis (My Life In Ruins) as the handsome Mr Fix-It Spiro Hakaiopulos, and Yorgos Karamihos (You Only Live Once) as Corfu local Theodore; and British actor Christopher Sciueref (300: Rise of An Empire, Skyfall) as the convict Kosti.
It’s 1935. Louisa’s life is in meltdown and her options are limited. Her husband died years ago, his money has all but run out, and her four unruly children are going off the rails: animal-obsessed Gerry is about to be thrown out of school, would-be novelist Larry is the worst estate agent in Bournemouth, and the middle two are about to crash into adulthood. Louisa realizes she can carry on struggling, marry someone oppressive but moneyed, or make a radical change and escape — from a domestic pressure-cooker, British weather, uptight Englishness, and narrow horizons — to a place where her family can heal itself before it’s too late. A place like Corfu.
Over six episodes, the series follows the Durrell family as they adjust to their new life in this exotic place, where they meet new friends, rivals, and lovers.
Filming of The Durrells will begin this September on location in Corfu. Additional details about the series are here.
Happy Valley: Series 2
Sarah Lancashire (Last Tango In Halifax, The Paradise), Siobhan Finneran (Downton Abbey, The Syndicate), James Norton (Life In Squares, Granchester), George Costigan (Scott & Bailey, Homefront), Karl Davies (Emmerdale, Game Of Thrones), and Charlie Murphy (Love/Hate, The Village) return to Happy Valley, as filming started this week on the multiple award-winning drama.
Joining them in the six-part Series 2 are Amelia Bullmore (Scott & Bailey, Twenty Twelve), Kevin Doyle (Downton Abbey, The Crimson Field), Katherine Kelly (Coronation Street, Mr Selfridge), Shirley Henderson (Southcliffe, Jamaica Inn), Matthew Lewis (Harry Potter, The Syndicate), Con O’Neill (Cucumber, Uncle), Julie Hesmondhalgh (Coronation Street, Cucumber), and Vincent Franklin (Cucumber, The Thick Of It).
When series two opens, no-nonsense police sergeant Catherine (Lancashire) is back heading up her team of dedicated police officers in the Calder Valley in West Yorkshire. Tommy Lee Royce (Norton) is behind bars, but Catherine suspects there may be another serial killer on the loose, and makes a gruesome discovery that will have shocking repercussions for her and her family. Meanwhile, a new detective, DS John Wadsworth (Doyle), arrives on the block with his own set of problems. And despite being firmly under lock and key, Tommy forms a bond with a mysterious female admirer (Henderson).
The 6×60 minute Happy Valley: Series 2 will be broadcast on BBC One in 2016. US viewers should look for it on Netflix.
One of Us
Set in Edinburgh and the Highlands, a host of acclaimed actors will feature in this gripping and powerful character-driven thriller for BBC One, including Juliet Stevenson (The Village, Truly, Madly Deeply), Joanna Vanderham (The Paradise, The Go-Between), Laura Fraser (Breaking Bad, Peter & Wendy), John Lynch (The Fall, Sliding Doors), Adrian Edmondson (War And Peace, Prey), and Georgina Campbell (Murdered By My Boyfriend, The Ark).
They are joined by Joe Dempsie (Game Of Thrones, Skins) Julie Graham (Shetland, The Bletchley Circle), Gary Lewis (Outlander, Stonemouth), Steve Evets (Rev, Looking For Eric), and Kate Dickie (Prometheus, Game Of Thrones).
Living side by side in isolated rural Scotland, the Elliot and Douglas families know each other inside out. However, when two of them are horrifically murdered, their lives are shattered and the relationships between and within the grieving families are tested to the limit. In the search for answers, skeletons are unearthed and old wounds are reopened, as honesty, loyalty, and morality are all brought into question. Everyone has secrets, but when the lines between right and wrong, good and bad, and true and false become blurred, more questions arise, including which path to take and how to cope with the lasting and deadly consequences.
Filming began this past Monday. Stay tuned for further details.
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