Damian Lewis joins cast of epic BBC Two drama, Wolf Hall
I love it when an author, such as Hilary Mantel, does her research and discovers an original understanding of a very familiar piece of history. Even during our rehearsals her detailed imagination of the world of Thomas Cromwell is alive in Peter Straughan's ingenious and faithful adaptation.Mark Rylance
Wolf Hall is a Company Pictures and Playground co-production for BBC Two and MASTERPIECE in association with BBC Worldwide.
BAFTA-winning director Peter Kosminsky (The Government Inspector, The Promise) will direct the flagship drama that charts the meteoric rise of Cromwell in the Tudor court, from his lowly start as a blacksmith's son to Henry VIII's closest advisor.
Claire Foy (The Promise) will play the calculating and ambitious Anne Boleyn in the six-part serial written by Oscar-nominated Peter Straughan (The Men Who Stare At Goats, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy).
Other casting includes Jonathan Pryce (Cranford) as the ostentatious and powerful Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, Joanne Whalley (The Borgias) as Henry 's first wife Katherine of Aragon, Mark Gatiss (Sherlock) as the haughty Stephen Gardiner, Secretary to the King, Anton Lesser (Endeavour) as the heretic hunter Thomas More, Mathieu Amalric (The Grand Budapest Hotel) as Ambassador of Spain Chapuys, Charity Wakefield (Sense & Sensibility), as Anne's sister Mary Boleyn, Jessica Raine (Call The Midwife) as Anne's sister-in-law Jane Rochford, Bernard Hill (Five Days) as the King's military commander the Duke of Norfolk, Richard Dillane (The Dark Knight) as the king's brother-in-law the Duke of Suffolk, Thomas Brodie-Sangster (Game Of Thrones) as Cromwell's ward Rafe Sadler, Natasha Little (Case Histories) as Cromwell's wife Liz, and Saskia Reeves (Turks & Caicos) as her sister Johane.
Mark Rylance says: "I love it when an author, such as Hilary Mantel, does her research and discovers an original understanding of a very familiar piece of history. Even during our rehearsals her detailed imagination of the world of Thomas Cromwell is alive in Peter Straughan's ingenious and faithful adaptation. I have to say, after my experience on The Government Inspector, I would gladly take part in any film that Peter Kosminsky makes. His ability to grasp complex political situations and bring them to life on film seems particularly suited for this material. Myself aside, I feel he has cast Wolf Hall with a superb eye for character and all the nuanced humanity Ms Mantel's masterpieces deserve."
Filming has begun in the South West of England for transmission in 2015 on BBC Two. Locations include six National Trust properties across the region.
Wolf Hall is a co-production of Company Pictures (Elizabeth I, Shameless, The Devil's Whore, The Shadow Line) and Playground (The White Queen, Dancing On The Edge, Dracula) - the US company helmed by Colin Callender - for BBC Two and MASTERPIECE (broadcaster and co-producers of Downton Abbey, Sherlock) in association with BBC Worldwide, Prescience and Altus Productions.
Colin Callender will executive produce for Playground, John Yorke for Company Pictures Polly Hill, BBC Head of Independent Drama, for BBC Two, Rebecca Eaton for MASTERPIECE, Martin Rakusen for BBC Worldwide and Tim Smith for Pescience and Altus Productions.
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