Game of Thrones actor Stephen Dillane, who plays Stannis Baratheon in the HBO epic fantasy drama, and French actress Clémence Poésy will lead the cast of The Tunnel. Poésy appeared in BBC One’s adaptation of Birdsong last year and her other notable roles include Gossip Girl and Harry Potter. The cast of The Tunnel will also include Merlin actress Angel Coulby, Birdsong and Game of Thrones actor Joseph Mawle and Da Vinci’s Demons actor Tom Bateman.
The Tunnel is part of Sky’s commitment to increase its original UK content both in drama and comedy. Sky’s commitment stretches across its range of channels (Sky Living, Sky One, Sky Atlantic and Sky Arts) and recent new commissions include Dracula and a biopic on James Bond author Ian Fleming. Recent re-commissions include new seasons for Strike Back, Mountain Pleasant and Mad Dogs.
As part of Sky’s continuing investment in original home-grown content, Sky Atlantic HD and CANAL + is today (1st February 2013) delighted to announce that Stephen Dillane (Game of Thrones) and Clémence Poésy (Birdsong) will lead the cast in The Tunnel . The director will be Dominik Moll (The Monk, Lemming) who won the 2001 César Award for Best Director for Harry, He’s Here to Help.
Thrilling crime drama, The Tunnel , is a Sky Atlantic HD and CANAL+ co-production from Kudos Film and TV and Shine France Films in association with Filmlance. Production on the 10 x 60’ series will begin this month for TX later in the year.
The Tunnel , adapted by an Anglo-French writing team led by Ben Richards (Spooks, Outcasts, Party Animals), is based on the format of The Bridge (created by Hans Rosenfeldt) but set against the backdrop of Europe in crisis. When a prominent French politician is found dead on the border between the UK and France, detectives Karl Roebuck (Dillane) and Elise Wassermann (Poésy) are sent to investigate on behalf of their respective countries. However, the case takes a surreal turn when a shocking discovery is made at the crime scene, forcing the French and British police into an uneasy partnership. As the serial killer uses ever more elaborate and ingenious methods to highlight the moral bankruptcy of modern society, Karl and Elise are drawn deeper into his increasingly personal agenda.
In further casting news, Joseph Mawle (Game of Thrones) will play social worker, Stephen Beaumont. Tom Bateman (Da Vinci’s Demons) will take the role of the UK journalist, Danny Hillier, who unintentionally becomes caught in the serial killer’s web. Tobi Bakare (Silent Witness) will play Chuks Akinade, junior counter-part to Karl Roebuck. Jeanne Balibar (All About Actresses) appears as Charlotte Joubert whose husband’s troubles lead her straight into the path of Karl and Elise’s investigations. Thibault de Montalembert (Days of Glory) will play the Head of the Calais police and Mathieu Carrièrre will play Charlotte’s husband, Alain. Angel Coulby (Merlin) and Jack Lowden (Mrs Biggs) will play Karl’s wife and son, Laura and Adam Roebuck.
Additionally, joining the cast in episode two will be Keeley Hawes (Ashes to Ashes) as Suze Harcourt, a drug-addicted care worker to Harriet, who will be played by Liz Smith (The Royle Family).
The Tunnel has been commissioned by Anne Mensah, Head of Drama, for Sky and Fabrice De La Patellière, Director of Fiction, for CANAL+. Primarily set in Folkestone and Calais, the series will be bilingual – a first in broadcasting for both the UK and France.
The Tunnel , alongside the recently announced Fleming (w/t),is the latest commission from Sky Atlantic HD following Sky’s commitment to increase its investment in original British content. By 2014, Sky expects to invest £600 million a year in British programmes across its portfolio of channels. Sky Atlantic HD is to be a major part of that charge by commissioning bold, authored pieces with strong narrative stories across a range of genres including drama, comedy and factual. The critically acclaimed Hit and Miss, created by Paul Abbott, was Sky Atlantic’s first original drama commission and was recently followed by Falcón, based on the best-selling novels of Robert Wilson.
The Tunnel will be executive produced by Anne Mensah for Sky, Fabrice De La Patellière for CANAL+, Jane Featherstone, Karen Wilson, Manda Levin and Ben Richards for Kudos Film and TV, Nora Melhli for Shine France and Lars Blomgren for Filmlance. The producer is Ruth Kenley-Letts (The Hour, The Nativity).