Who Do You Think You Are Returns to BBC One for a 13th series

This year's series spans centuries and crosses continents to unearth extraordinary genealogical revelations for some of the UK's most beloved actors, performers and presenters.Tom McDonald, Head of Natural History & Specialist Factual Commissioning
Date: 13.07.2016     Last updated: 13.07.2016 at 12.08
Category: BBC One; Factual
Stars from the world of TV, theatre, music, comedy and news join in the 13th series of the original genealogy show Who Do You Think You Are? from Wall To Wall (a Warner Bros Television Production UK Ltd company) when it returns to BBC One this autumn.

EastEnders actor Danny Dyer, Britain’s Got Talent judge Amanda Holden, star of film and stage Sir Ian McKellen, news presenter Sophie Raworth, The Royle Family actor Ricky Tomlinson, Star Wars and Harry Potter actor Warwick Davis, presenter Liz Bonnin, actor and comedian Greg Davies, actress Sunetra Sarker and popstar Cheryl all discover their past in this year’s series.

Our ten embark on journeys of discovery deep into their families' past, spanning almost a thousand years of history. With heartbreak and laughter, intrigue and surprise, they discover a cast of remarkable ancestors, including freedom fighters and criminals, war heroes and bigamists. Each film captures every step of a celebrity’s mission to learn more about their ancestors’ lives.

The series will see extraordinary firsts as it travels to new territories, exploring how our celebrities’ ancestors were caught up in slavery-era Martinique and the birth of Bangladesh, and discovers previously untold stories, from the invention of the weekend to the first pineapples in Britain; from Welsh royalty to the perils of life in working-class Liverpool.

We’ll follow actor Danny Dyer’s remarkable journey as he traces his family from poverty and crime in the East End back through the centuries to an incredible connection to royalty. Cheryl’s journey is one of equal contrasts, as she discovers the story of her long and forgotten great grandfather - a quintessential Tommy in the First World War. While Amanda Holden’s investigation brings to light an extraordinary Napoleonic-era cross-channel romance and the forgotten tragedy of Britain’s worst ever maritime disaster.

Executive Producer for Wall to Wall, Colette Flight, says: “Who Do You Think You Are? is back with another brilliant line-up of much-loved stars, uncovering hidden history by bringing their ancestors to life. As we follow our celebrities on their personal journey into their family trees, an extraordinary range of incredible stories are revealed, sometimes tragic, sometimes funny, but always compelling.”

Tom McDonald, BBC Head of Natural History & Specialist Factual Commissioning adds: "Who Do You Think You Are? continues to be one of the annual factual highlights on BBC One. This year's series spans centuries of history and crosses continents to unearth extraordinary genealogical revelations for some of the UK's most beloved actors, performers and presenters.”

Series 13 was commissioned by Charlotte Moore, Director of Content and Tom McDonald, Head of Natural History & Specialist Factual Commissioning. The Commissioning Executive Producer is Diene Petterle.

Rich Cain - rich@ijpr.co.uk / BBC Front Desk