via press release:
BAFTA AWARD WINNING WRITER ABI MORGAN BRINGS HER ESPIONAGE THRILLER TO BBC AMERICA
The Hour to launch new weekly slot Dramaville
Dominic West (The Wire, The Devil’s Whore), Romola Garai (One Day, Emma, Atonement) and Ben Whishaw (Bright Star, Brideshead Revisited) lead an all-star cast on The Hour, an intriguing, sexy and original, edge-of-your-seat spy thriller set in the world of television journalism in 1956. Written and created by BAFTA award-winning Abi Morgan (White Girl, Sex Traffic, Brick Lane, Murder), The Hour launches BBC AMERICA’s weekly, hour-long British drama slot, Dramaville. The Hour premieres Wednesday, August 17, 10:00p.m. ET/PT.
Set behind the scenes of the BBC newsroom, just as an investigative news program is launched, the drama plots the personal lives, professional interplay and jealous ambition between aspiring but renegade journalist Freddie Lyon (Whishaw), the beautiful ambitious young producer Bel Rowley (Garai) with whom he is in love, and his handsome rival Hector Madden (West), the face and lead anchorman of this rising television news team. The Hour plays out as a riveting thriller set against the backdrop of the Cold War.
Viewers witness the decade on the threshold of change – from the ruthless sexual politics behind the polite social façade of the ‘50s to the revelations that redefined the world for a new generation. Over the six episodes, the interplay and intense ambitions between the rising news team plays out against the backdrop of a mysterious murder and Freddie’s controversial and dangerous investigation.
Freddie Lyon is a brilliant and outspoken journalist whose passion endlessly lands him in trouble. Getting to the truth of a story can be a dangerous and risky business, and it’s Bel, his contemporary and best friend, who is always there to bail him out. For Freddie, Bel is so much more as well – if only he were brave enough to tell her.
Bel Rowley is spirited and ambitious and facing the most exciting and daunting challenge of her life – running The Hour. Can her passion for the truth survive the political pressure the job will bring – and will her friendship with Freddie survive her undeniable attraction to front man Hector?
Hector Madden is charming and charismatic – a man whose upbringing and education have instilled in him a sense of entitlement, and whose glamorous young wife has the family connections to get him the job as front man on The Hour. But beneath the confident façade Hector has a lot to prove. Bel provides the challenge – and the spark.
The Hour’s supporting cast includes Tim Pigott-Smith and Juliet Stevenson as Lord and Lady Elms, Anton Lesser as Clarence Fendley, the BBC’s Head of News, Anna Chancellor as Lix, The Hour’s brave and maverick hard-drinking foreign correspondent, Julian Rhind-Tutt as Angus McCain, the Prime Minister’s eyes and ears, and Oona Chaplin as Marnie Madden, Hector’s spoilt beautiful wife.
BBC AMERICA’s new weekly British drama slot, Dramaville, will be hosted by Golden Globe nominee and Luther star Idris Elba, and air Wednesdays at 10:00pm ET/PT. Following The Hour, Dramaville will premiere the sequel to Luther on September 28 and the new crime drama, Whitechapel, on October 26.
BBC AMERICA delivers U.S. audiences high-quality, innovative and intelligent programming. Established in 1998, it has been the launch pad for talent embraced by American mainstream pop culture, including Ricky Gervais, Gordon Ramsay, Graham Norton, and successful programming formats including ground-breaking non-scripted television like Top Gear and top-rated science-fiction like Doctor Who. Owned by BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the BBC, BBC AMERICA has attracted both critical acclaim and major awards including an Emmy, four Golden Globes and ten Peabody Awards. The channel attracts one of cable’s most affluent and educated audiences and is available on digital cable and satellite TV in more than 68 million homes. It broadcasts in both standard and high-definition, with content available On Demand across all major digital platforms. Online, www.bbcamerica.com is the place to go to dig deeper into pop culture with a British twist. Find out more by visiting www.press.bbcamerica.com or follow us on www.twitter.com/bbcamerica.