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C5 orders Anne Boleyn drama

Jodie Turner-Smith will play Anne Boleyn in the C5 series

The UK’s Channel 5 has greenlit a three-part drama about Tudor monarch Anne Boleyn from Sony-backed Fable Pictures, with Jodie Turner-Smith (Queen & Slim) in the lead role.

Ben Frow

Described as a psychological thriller, the show is titled Anne Boleyn and will also star Amanda Burton (Silent Witness), Paapa Essiedu (I May Destroy You), Thalissa Teixeira (Two Weeks To Live) and Barry Ward (Des).

The series will explore the final months of Boleyn’s life “as she struggles to survive, to secure a future for her daughter, and to challenge the powerful patriarchy closing in around her,” according to the producers.

The script comes from newcomer Eve Hedderwick Turner, with Lynsey Miller (Deadwater Fell) directing. The show will be produced by Faye Ward and Hannah Farrell through their London-based prodco Fable Pictures.

Sony Pictures Television (SPT) is distributing the show internationally.

The show was commissioned by Ben Frow, director of programmes at Channel 5 parent company ViacomCBS Networks UK, and deputy director of programmes Sebastian Cardwell, as well as SPT’s president of international production Wayne Garvie. Historian Dan Jones will serve as executive producer.

The show follows ViacomCBS-owned Channel 5’s recent commission of Anne Boleyn: Arrest, Trial, Execution (3×60’) from All3Media-owned Lion Television. “It is no secret that I’m a huge Anne Boleyn fan and we know she’s a proven success as a subject with factual and film audiences,” said Frow.

“This project re-frames her story as a propulsive psychological thriller, told from a new perspective, with top talent like Jodie Turner-Smith attached. It was simply too irresistible to say no to and I’m very excited to see the finished product.”

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