“THERE is an invisible workforce all around us.
“Everyone is so busy in cities going to and from their jobs and you don’t really pay attention.
“Many of those are working contracts, coming in overnight when we’re all going home.”
Executive producer Jane Featherstone talking to me about Cleaning Up.
A new six part ITV drama starring Sheridan Smith, Jade Anouka, Matthew McNulty, Ben Bailey Smith and Rosie Cavaliero.
Which begins at 9pm on Wednesday January 9.
“IT must be a horrible feeling to trust someone and then find out they weren’t who they said they were.”
Sheridan Smith talking to me about her role as Jo Gillespie in new three-part drama Black Work.
It’s always a pleasure to speak to Sheridan and this latest encounter came just after she had been to Buckingham Palace to collect her OBE from Prince William:
“An unforgettable day. Absolutely magical, like a dream. I will never, ever, forget it.”
STEP inside love…
We’ll get to my ITV interviews for their new three-part 1960s’ drama a little further down. But first:
I was just a little lad when I first saw Cilla.
My mum and dad and I were on an annual holiday to Blackpool, staying on the top floor of a packed bed and breakfast establishment.
The second of my ITV Drama Press Pack interviews:
“If there was ever a story that typified that crime doesn’t pay, this would be it,” says Daniel Mays.
“It’s a controversial story. Ronnie Biggs divides opinion, even to this day. To some he represents a folk hero. But others said, ‘Lock him up and throw away the key.’
“My biggest challenge is to test people’s pre-conceived ideas of who he is. It’s such an incredible story and it merits being told.”
I’ve been lucky enough this summer to write the interviews for four ITV Drama press packs – otherwise known as production notes.
One of the projects was Mrs Biggs, a superb five-part series which begins on ITV1 at 9pm on Wednesday September 5 with a 90 minute opening episode.
Back in February I interviewed the real Mrs Biggs – Charmian – who acted as a consultant on the drama.
And followed that with later interviews involving Sheridan Smith, who plays her on screen, Daniel Mays (Ronnie Biggs) plus writer and executive producer Jeff Pope.
CHARMIAN Brent is a remarkable woman with quite a story to tell.
She’s known to the world as Charmian Biggs, the wife of Great Train Robber Ronnie Biggs.
The couple divorced in 1976 and she has continued to live in Australia.
But to many their lives remain entwined.
Now ITV are to tell the story in detail from Charmian’s perspective for the first time.
Today it was officially confirmed that Sheridan Smith will play the title role in five-part drama Mrs Biggs.
COMEDIAN John Bishop is to star in BBC1’s hard-hitting drama Accused.
The award-winning stand-up plays a troubled father called Peter in the second series of Jimmy McGovern’s show.
Liverpool-born John, 44, said he was “made up” to land the role in an episode of the new four-part series which begins filming this weekend.
INJUSTICE actor James Purefoy is still set to star in the return of classic TV show The Saint.
Or so it would appear.
I spoke to him about the role of British international playboy Simon Templar when we met in London last month.
James told me that filming of an American TV pilot – The Saint In New Orleans – was due to start in July.
Of which more further down this blog.
But he was not asked about the project when he appeared on BBC1’s Breakfast sofa this morning.
Or during his ITV1 interview with Lorraine yesterday.
YOU can count on QI and Jonathan Creek star Alan Davies to give an honest opinion.
When he’s not winding people up on Twitter.
Last month I took part in small round table interviews in London with Alan, co-star Sheridan Smith and writer David Renwick.
Ahead of the new Jonathan Creek film – The Judas Tree – which is screened on BBC1 at 8pm on Easter Sunday.
Where he spoke about “the terrible climate of fear” in British TV today.
As well as his TV pay cut and reductions in drama budgets.