28 January 2023 The Irish Film & Television Network
Maria Doyle Kennedy Goes Sci-Fi For BBC America’s ‘Orphan Black’
25 Oct 2012 : By Eva Hall
Maria Doyle Kennedy recently starred in 'Downton Abbey'
BBC America has delved into the Irish acting pool again with Maria Doyle Kennedy the latest Irish actress to land a leading role in a BBC America series.

The ‘The Tudors’ actress is starring opposite Canadian actress Tatiana Maslany (World Without End) and ‘The Bay’ actor Dylan Bruce in new sci-fi series ‘Orphan Black’.

Currently shooting in Toronto, the series follows Maslany’s character Sarah, a street-wise chameleon who makes the shocking discovery that she is a clone.

‘Flashpoint’ and ‘Spartacus’ helmers Graeme Manson and John Fawcett co-created the series, which will premiere in the US as part of BBC America’s Supernatural Saturdays programming block.

The show is executive produced by Ivan Schneeberg and David Fortier for Temple Street Productions.

Also starring is Jordan Gavaris (Degrassi), Michael Mando (Territories), Elizabeth Saunders (Saving Hope), Ron Lea (Saving Hope) and Kevin Hanchard (Republic of Doyle).

Doyle Kennedy’s recent roles include Julian Fellowes’ period dramas ‘Downton Abbey’, in which she played Vera Bates, a character whose death is still affecting the residents of Downton, and ‘Titanic’, in which she played Muriel Batley, an unhappy Irish woman whose life didn’t turn out as she had hoped.

BBC America has been whetting its appetite with Irish-attached dramas of late, having just announced a second series of Irish detective drama ‘Copper’, which stars Dublin actor Kevin Ryan as a New York cop who emigrated from Ireland; and the recent selling of BBC America co-production ‘Ripper Street’, which was also produced by Dublin’s Element Pictures and the UK’s Tiger Aspect and Lookout Point.

Irish actors that feature in ‘Ripper Street’ include Charlene McKenna (Raw) and David Wilmot (Shadow Dancer).

BBC Worldwide will distribute ‘Orphan Black’ internationally in 2013.

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