UK’s Sky Television Adds Billie Piper And Ben Whishaw Drama To Roster

Photo courtesy of sky.com
Photo courtesy of sky.com

Photo courtesy of sky.com

Bradleigh-Ann Walker
Staff Writer

Sky has introduced a few new dramas to be added to their network in the upcoming months.

Billie Piper, Ben Whishaw, and Lindsay Duncan will star in one of the new endeavors, entitled Foxtrot.

Kasterborous reports that Foxtrot is a play written by playwright Polly Stenham, centering on a gang heist gone awry. It will air as one of the Sky Arts Playhouse Presents series, which airs on Sky Atlantic.

Stenham and Duncan have worked together in the past. The former made her playwriting debut with That Face, written when she was just 19 years old, at London’s Royal Court Theater in 2007. Duncan played the lead role, alongside Doctor Who star Matt Smith.

The Foxtrot cast includes a couple of Doctor Who connections. Lindsay Duncan appeared on an episode of the show in 2009, and Billie Piper has starred as Rose Tyler since 2005.

Their costar Ben Whishaw, however, is known for his role as Q in the latest James Bond installment—Skyfall. He’ll also return in the next Bond film, expected for release in 2015.

Nightshift will also air in the Playhouse series, according to the Radio Times.

Ashley Walters, star of the crime thriller Top Boy, and Mrs. Biggs actor Daniel Mays will play policemen on the night shift in South East London.

Another addition to Sky’s lineup is Critical, a 13-episode medical drama written by Jed Mercurio. It appears to share similarities with previous shows of the genre, focusing on the medical staff’s efforts to save trauma patients’ lives, as well as the various ups and downs surrounding those crucial moments.

Sky’s director of entertainment, Stuart Murphy, sent some shots at rival networks BBC and Channel 4 during the Sky Drama Launch on September 17.

According to The Telegraph, Murphy labeled the channels’ TV shows “depressing” and “morose”. He believes they’re sorely lacking in shows that their viewers can watch for the sake of pure entertainment.

He said that the humor in his network’s dramas would set them apart from their rivals, and that he wanted Sky to become “Britain’s HBO”.

“I am very happy to leave the po-faced, stick-up-your-backside, morose drama to others,” Murphy said boldly.

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