Mark Rylance, Damian Lewis, Jonathan Pryce and Claire Foy appear in new stills from BBC2’s adaptation of the Hilary Mantel novel.
As we inch closer to December and the shops fill up with Christmas, your thoughts probably aren’t straying into 2015. But – just for a second – look ahead to the new year and a string of exciting new dramas, among them the BBC’s Wolf Hall.
The six-part adaptation of Hilary Mantel’s Man Booker Prize-winning novel has attracted a star-studded cast with Mark Rylance playing protagonist Thomas Cromwell opposite Damian Lewis as Henry VIII. Mark Gatiss appears as Bishop Stephen Gardiner with Claire Foy playing Anne Boleyn, Jonathan Pryce as Thomas Wolsey and Jessica Raine portraying Jane Boleyn.
We’ve already had a sneak peek at Lewis’s temperamental monarch, but today brings us a first look at Cromwell, the king’s right hand man through whom Mantel constructs her narrative, plus some snaps of director Peter Kosminsky working with his cast.
At the Cheltenham Literature Festival last month, Mantel discussed the importance of holding onto historical accuracy when adapting the tale and advised Wolf Hall must learn from the mistakes of American series The Tudors.
“It is perfectly possible to do good history and good drama – they are not mutually contradictory. That is vital as an understanding, as a basis to begin work. Because as soon as you decide this is too complicated for the viewer or history is an inconvenient shape – ‘I’ll just tidy it up’ – you fall into a cascade of errors which ends in nonsense.”
Wolf Hall is set to air on BBC2 in 2015