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Chris O'Dowd Picks 'Crimson Petal' Role
12 Aug 2010 :
Chris O'Dowd wireimage
Irish actor Chris O’Dowd (The IT Crowd, The Boat that Rocked) has started filming ‘The Crimson Petal and the White’ – a four part adaptation of the novel of the same name by Michael Faber. Chris will star in the thriller series alongside Romola Garai (Emma, Atonement), Gillian Anderson (The X Files, Bleak House), and Richard E. Grant (Withnail and I, Gosford Park). It is expected that the four part thriller will broadcast this winter.

Chris’ other cast members include Shirley Henderson (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Charles II) , Amanda Hale (Murderland, Bright Star) and Mark Gatiss (Sherlock, The League Of Gentlemen). The Origin Pictures production has been adapted by playwright and screenwriter Lucinda Coxon (The Heart of Me), and directed by award-winning Marc Munden (The Devil's Whore, The Mark Of Cain) and looks to lift the lid on the darker side of Victorian London to reveal a world seething with vitality, sexuality, ambition and emotion.

Chris plays wealthy businessman William Rackham in the series. The story centres around Sugar (played by Romola Garai), an alluring, intelligent young prostitute who yearns for a better life away from the brothel she is attached to – run by Gillian Anderson’s contemptible Mrs Castaway. Sugar’s life changes when she meets O’Dowd’s Rackham - but she’s soon putting plans into action, actions that will change both their lives even further.

Chris O’Dowd involvement with the project follows a recent role in the upcoming comedy ‘Dinner for Schmucks’ alongside Steve Carell (The 40 Year Old Virgin) and Paul Rudd (I Love You, Man). The Roscommon born actor has received two IFTA award nominations for his roles in both ‘Showbands II’ and ‘The Clinic’ and he was awarded a BAFTA Scotland acting award for ‘Fetsival’ in 2005. His recent other roles include the part of Simple Simon in ‘The Boat that Rocked’, James in ‘Conspiracy of Silence’, Ray in HBO’s ‘Frequently Asked Quesitons About Time Travel’ and his ongoing role as Roy in ‘The IT Crowd’ for which he is best known amongst television audiences.

All four episodes are being directed by Marc Munden (The Devil's Whore, The Mark Of Cain). It is a UK-Canada co-production, co-produced with Cite-Amerique. The supporting cast of the 4 x 60 minute thriller includes Tom Georgeson (Bleak House), Liz White (Life On Mars), Blake Ritson (Emma) and Bertie Carvel (Sherlock). It was commissioned for BBC Two by Ben Stephenson, Controller of BBC Drama, and Janice Hadlow, Controller of BBC Two. The executive producer for the BBC is Lucy Richer (Tsunami: The Aftermath, Sweeney Todd) and the producer for Origin Pictures is David Thompson, who will produce with Steven Lightfoot (No Angels, Never Judge a Book).



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