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24 September 2014
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The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (L-R) Anika Noni Rose, Jill Scott, Lucian Msamati

The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
Sunday 23 March at 9pm on BBC One


Based on the first novel in the best-selling series by Alexander McCall Smith The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency, starring Jill Scott and Anika Noni Rose, is a film for BBC One, directed by Anthony Minghella from a script he co-wrote with Richard Curtis.


The film stars Grammy award-winning singer Jill Scott in her film debut as Mma Ramotswe. Anika Noni Rose (Dreamgirls) plays her secretary Mma Makutsi and Lucian Msamati (Spooks) plays Mma Ramotswe's suitor, JLB Matekoni.


They are joined by David Oyelowo (The Last King Of Scotland, Spooks), Idris Elba (28 Weeks Later, The Wire), Colin Salmon (Die Another Day, Party Animals), actor and comedian Desmond Dube (Hotel Rwanda) and Tony Award winner John Kani.


The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency is a poignant and passionate story chronicling the adventures of Precious Ramotswe.


Eminently sensible, she's the wise proprietor of the only female-owned detective agency in Botswana. She investigates cases, helps people solve problems in their lives, and falls in love with the highly respectable owner of a local garage.


Precious sells her late father's cows and moves to the city to become Botswana's finest – and only – female private detective. Her methods may be unconventional but she's got warmth, wit and canny intuition on her side, not to mention the support of her friends Mr JLB Matekoni, proprietor of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors and Mma Makutsi, the fastest-typing secretary in Gaborone.


Precious needs as much help as she can get, to solve the mysteries of a missing finger, a dubious Daddy, a cheating husband and as she heads into dark and dangerous territory of witchcraft.


"Filming The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency in Botswana was an amazing adventure," says Anthony. "The people were marvellous and the landscape, especially in the northern areas of the country, is extraordinary.


"Particularly fascinating to me was working and filming in an African country where old and new are currently co-existing, where traditional values have not yet been eroded by the demands and efficiencies and neuroses of the modern. It was a privilege to be working on a film which celebrates what we can learn from Africa and not what we think we can teach it."


The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency is directed by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Anthony Minghella (The English Patient), from a script by Minghella and Academy Award nominee Richard Curtis (Bridget Jones' Diary) and produced by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Sydney Pollack (Out Of Africa) and Timothy Bricknell (Cold Mountain) for Mirage along with Amy J Moore.


The film was financed by the Weinstein Company and the BBC with the support of the Republic of Botswana.







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