BBC First might be onto something. This week Wolf Hall, the highly-anticipated, 6-part TV adaption of Hilary Mantel’s Booker Prize-winning novels pulled an incredible 3.9 million viewers for its first episode in the UK. For BBC 2 it was the biggest overnight audience for an episode in a drama series for a decade.
Wolf Hall and its sequel Bring Up The Bodies will be premiering in Australia on BBC First after Easter.
The lavish series stars Emmy-nominated Damian Lewis as Henry VIII, Olivier and Tony Award-winner Mark Rylance as Thomas Cromwell and Claire Foy as the calculating and ambitious Anne Boleyn.
Directed by BAFTA-winning Peter Kosminsky and adapted by Oscar-nominated Peter Straughan, the flagship drama presents an intimate portrait of Thomas Cromwell, the brilliant consigliere to King Henry VIII, as he manoeuvres the corridors of power at the Tudor court. The story follows the complex machinations and back room dealings of this pragmatic and accomplished power broker – from humble beginnings and an enigmatic past – who must serve king and country while navigating deadly political intrigue, the King’s tempestuous relationship with Anne Boleyn and the religious upheavals of the Protestant reformation.
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.”
The drama also stars Jonathan Pryce (Cranford), Joanne Whalley (The Borgias), Mark Gatiss (Sherlock),Jessica Raine (Call The Midwife), Mathieu Amalric (The Grand Budapest Hotel), Thomas Brodie-Sangster(Game of Thrones) and Saskia Reeves (Turks & Caicos).
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