Stellar further casting has been announced for Gentleman Jack, the new eight-part drama created, written and directed by Sally Wainwright (To Walk Invisible, Last Tango In Halifax, Happy Valley). Gentleman Jack is a Lookout Point production for the BBC, co-produced with HBO.
Joining BAFTA award winner Suranne Jones (Doctor Foster, Save Me) as the remarkable Regency landowner Anne Lister will be Sophie Rundle (Bodyguard, Peaky Blinders) as Ann Walker, the wealthy heiress who Anne Lister soon sets her sights on marrying.
Gemma Whelan (The Moorside, Game Of Thrones) will play Anne Lister’s sister Marian, with Timothy West (Last Tango In Halifax, Bleak House) as their father Jeremy Lister, and Gemma Jones (God’s Own County, Bridget Jones’s Diary) as Aunt Anne Lister.
Stephanie Cole (Waiting For God, Still Open All Hours) will play Ann Walker’s Aunt. Peter Davison (Liar, Doctor Who) and Amelia Bullmore (Happy Valley, Scott & Bailey) will play William and Eliza Priestley, Ann Walker’s cousin and his wife. Christopher Rawson, businessman and fierce rival to Anne Lister, will be played by Vincent Franklin (Cucumber, Happy Valley), whilst his brother and business partner Jeremiah will be played by Shaun Dooley (Gunpowder, Broadchurch).
Casting also includes Joe Armstrong (Darkest Hour, Britannia, Happy Valley) as Samuel Washington, Jodhi May (Genius, The Amazing Mrs Pritchard) as Vere Hobart, Rosie Cavaliero (Hold The Sunset, Unforgotten) as Elizabeth Cordingley, Thomas Howes (Downton Abbey, United) as John Booth, Jessica Baglow (Waterloo Road) as Rachael Hemingway, and newcomers Albane Courtois as Eugénie Pierre and Ben Hunter as Joseph Booth.
Sally Wainwright says: “I’m delighted that the story of Anne Lister has attracted such a talented, stand-out cast. We also have a wonderful crew on board and I can’t wait to start filming”.
After years of exotic travel, Anne Lister returns to Halifax, West Yorkshire in 1832, determined to transform the fate of her faded ancestral home Shibden Hall.
Every part of her story is based in historical fact, recorded in the four million words of her diaries that contain the most intimate details of her life, once hidden in a secret code that is now broken. Many of the diary extracts have been decoded for the very first time for the series.
Gentleman Jack is a remarkable and unlikely love story, set in the complex, changing world of Halifax – the cradle of the industrial revolution. The drama will explore Anne Lister’s relationships at home with her family, her servants, her tenants and her industrial rivals, who will use any dirty tricks they can to bring her down. At its heart is Anne’s relationship with her would-be wife, Ann Walker. The series has all the warmth, wit, humour and complexity that audiences have come to associate with Sally Wainwright’s writing.
The 8×60’ series was commissioned by Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content, and Piers Wenger, Controller BBC Drama Commissioning. It will be directed by Sally Wainwright and Sarah Harding, produced by Lookout Point for BBC One, and co-produced with HBO. Executive Producers are Sally Wainwright, Faith Penhale and Laura Lankester for Lookout Point, Ben Irving for BBC One, and Francesca Orsi and Kathleen McCaffrey for HBO. The producer is Phil Collinson.
Filming will begin next month in and around West Yorkshire and on location in Copenhagen.