EXCLUSIVE: BBC Two’s upcoming 90 minute one-off drama The Thirteenth Tale has added another actress to its already impressive list of cast members. I’ve just learned that Welsh actress Alexandra Roach (Utopia) has landed a role on the drama. A production source tells me that Roach has been cast as Hester Barrow, Adeline and Emmeline March’s governess. Roach’s casting comes after TVWise previously broke the news that Oscar winner Vanessa Redgrave, Olivia Colman (Broadchurch), Sophie Turner (Game of Thrones), Gordon Winter (Friday Night Dinner), Antonia Clarke (Lightfields) and Robert Pugh (Game of Thrones) have all been cast in the drama.
Based on the novel of the same name by Diane Setterfield, The Thirteenth Tale tells the story of the residents of Angelfield House and follows ageing novelist Vida Winter (Vanessa Redgrave), who enlists young writer Margaret Lea (Olivia Colman) to finally tell the story of her life – including her mysterious childhood spent in Angelfield House, which burned to the ground when she was a teenager. The project has been described to me as a “chilling ghost story which examines family tragedy.” The adaptation was written by Christopher Hampton, who previously adapted Doris Lessing’s novel Two Mothers and Ian McEwan’s novel Atonement. Heyday Films is producing with David Heyman, Norma Heyman and Rosie Alison serving as producers. Inside Men helmer James Kent is attached to direct.
It was back in March that TVWise broke the news that BBC Two Controller Janice Hadlow and the BBC’s Controller of Drama Ben Stephenson had commissioned an adaptation of The Thirteenth Tale and that it would be a key part of the channel’s Christmas line up. It should be noted that the BBC has yet to announce anything in connection to the project or confirm any of our scoops. Production on The Thirteenth Tale is slated to commence later this month.