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ITV: Anna Friel heads up cast of new drama Marcella

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Anna Friel has taken the lead role in  major new 8 part crime drama Marcella from ITV created by Scandinavian writer Hans Rosenfeldt (The Bridge and several highly successful novels).

The thrille will also star Downton Abbey’s Laura Carmichael, Nicholas Pinnock (Fortitude, Captain America), Ian Puleston-Davies (Coronation Street, Being Human), Nina Sosanya (W1A, Last Tango in Halifax), Ray Panthaki (named BAFTA breakthrough Brit 2014, Convenience), Jamie Bamber (Law & Order: UK, Battlestar Galactica), Sinead Cusack (Jekyll and Hyde, Eastern Promises), Patrick Baladi (The Office, Mistresses), and Harry Lloyd (Game of Thrones, The Theory of Everything).

Produced by Buccaneer Media and co-created by Hans Rosenfeldt and Nicola Larder (Sky’s development executive on The Tunnel and Dracula), Marcella is Hans Rosenfeldt’s first exclusively created drama for the UK audience following the global success of The Bridge, a Swedish/Danish co-production which achieved critical acclaim when it began broadcasting in the UK in 2014.

Set in contemporary London with a British Metropolitan Police Detective at its heart, Marcella is noir thriller told with Rosenfeldt’s unflinchingly multi layered Nordic style. Marcella’s 8 x 60’ episodes will lead the audience through a narrative maze where any character could be a witness, victim or potential suspect. Marcella will get involved in a serial murder case where the modus operandi of the killer bares a striking resemblance to an unsolved spate of killings from a decade ago.

Marcella is shocked to the core of her being when her husband Jason (Nicholas Pinnock) leaves her unexpectedly, confessing he no longer loves her.

Heartbroken, Marcella returns to the Met’s Murder Squad. Ten years ago Marcella gave up her fast-tracked police career to marry and devote her life to her family. With the abrupt end to her marriage and isolated from her 13 year old daughter and 10 year old son, Marcella throws herself into work to stop herself from falling apart.

Marcella wants back in on the serial killer case she first worked on in 2005. She’s got a hunch she wants to follow up on, a hunch she couldn’t follow through with due to falling pregnant with a second child. Has the killer re-appeared or is a copycat murderer responsible for these recent deaths? How will Marcella cope returning to duties when her own temperament is so fragile and vulnerable? Will throwing herself into her work provide the answers she’s seeking? Or lead her dangerously into territory she must evade at all cost?

Suspicious of her husband’s motives for leaving her, Marcella finds herself playing detective away from work, but will her findings lead her to further heartbreak?

Marcella will be executive produced by Rosenfeldt, Nicola Larder and Buccaneer Media’s founder Tony Wood who created the joint venture production company in partnership with global entertainment company, Cineflix Media. The director is Charles Martin (New Worlds, Skins, The Returned) and Andrew Woodhead (Fortitude, Spooks, Law & Order: UK) is producer. Second director is Jonathan Teplitzky, whose directing credits include Broadchurch and the movies Burning Man and The Railway Man. Henrik Georgsson (The Bridge, Wallander) will also direct.

Anna Friel said of her role: “I’m thrilled to be working on Hans Rosenfeldt’s first English drama. Scandinavian storytelling is hugely inspiring but we Brits usually have to settle for doing a remake, so to be working with Hans on an original piece for ITV is a true privilege. Marcella is a complex woman and a wonderful layered character. Hans’ marvellous scripts have drawn a fantastic cast and crew together. I can’t wait to begin.”

Filming will commence in London and surrounding areas from November 2015.

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