Thomasin McKenzie, Sian Clifford, Jessica Hynes to star in BBC One’s Life After Life
Staff Reporter | On 21, Apr 2021
BBC One is bringing Kate Atkinson’s novel Life After Life to the screen, and it’s lined up a star-studded cast for the drama.
Thomasin McKenzie (Leave No Trace, Jojo Rabbit), Sian Clifford (Fleabag), James McArdle (Man In An Orange Shirt), Jessica Brown Findlay (Brave New World) and Jessica Hynes (Years And Years) will lead the cast of the four-part drama. They are joined by Patsy Ferran (Black Narcissus), Harry Michell (Yesterday), Laurie Kynaston (The Trouble With Maggie Cole) Joshua Hill (Small Axe) and Maria Laird (Derry Girls).
Thomasin McKenzie plays Ursula Todd, who is born to Sylvie and Hugh (Sian Clifford and James McArdle) one night in 1910, but dies before she draws her first breath. On that same night in 1910, Ursula is reborn and survives. Time and time again, living and dying in different circumstances, Ursula is reborn into a new, alternative iteration of life once more. This compelling story follows Ursula as she navigates each new life, through a critical era which spans two world wars, an encounter with Hitler and major life events. But what is it that Ursula so desperately needs to stay alive for? Can a perfect life ever be lived? Can the course of history ever be changed? Can Ursula save the world?
Playwright Bash Doran (The Looming Tower, Traitors) has adapted the novel for the screen and it will be directed by John Crowley (Brooklyn, Boy A). Tessa Ross and Juliette Howell will exec-produce the project for House Productions, alongside Lucy Richer and Ayela Butt for the BBC and Doran, Crowley and Atkinson.
McKenzie says: “I’m drawn to Life After Life because it makes me laugh, cry, clench my fists in anger or whoop with empowerment. Bash has done a stunning job at adapting Kate Atkinson’s masterpiece, and working with John has already taught me a great deal – reinforcing my love for collaborating and creating.”
Filming is now underway.