The newly announced additional cast for The Watch

The Further Cast of The Watch

BBC STUDIO’S THE WATCH ENLISTS ANNA CHANCELLOR AND JAMES FLEET

Ingrid Oliver, Ruth Madeley, Hakeem Kae-Kazim and Bianca Simone Mannie Also Set to Join the Cast of the Drama for BBC AMERICA Inspired by Sir Terry Pratchett’s Bestselling “Discworld” Novels

BBC Studios today announced Anna Chancellor, James Fleet, Ingrid Oliver, Ruth Madeley, Hakeem Kae-Kazim, and Bianca Simone Mannie have joined the cast of its disruptive original series, The Watch. Co-produced with Narrativia for BBC AMERICA, The Watch is inspired by Sir Terry Pratchett’s bestselling “Discworld” novels.

Set in a fictional city where crime has been legalised, The Watch is a genre-busting series that follows a group of misfit cops as they rise up from decades of helplessness to save their corrupt city from catastrophe. Uniquely anarchic and thrillingly entertaining, the character-driven drama follows several of Sir Terry Pratchett’s best-loved creations on a riotous and emotional odyssey.

Anna Chancellor (Pennyworth, Timewasters) is set to star as Lord Vetinari, The Patrician of Ankh-Morpork, and architect of the city’s normalized wrongness and ramshackle system of governance. James Fleet (Outlander, The Vicar of Dibley) stars as The Archchancellor, wizard, magical advisor, and the Head of the Unseen University. Ingrid Oliver (Defending the Guilty, Doctor Who) stars as the Head of The Assassins’ Guild, Doctor Cruces. Ruth Madeley (The Rook, Years and Years) stars as the wiry Throat, the city’s best snitch, with a gang of freelance henchmen at her beck and call. Hakeem Kae-Kazim (Deep State, Dynasty) stars as Captain John Keel, former leader of The Watch and mentor to Sam Vimes, determined to save the corrupt and chaotic city. Bianca Simone Mannie (Homeland, Saints & Strangers) stars as the cunning Wonse, a wizard hopeful in waiting who is frequently underestimated.

Anna Chancellor says: “It’s been so exciting to join such a wonderfully creative team - from writer Simon Allen to the stunning production design and a truly talented group of actors - to help realise Terry Prachett’s brilliantly anarchic yet strangely real and moving world. With the combining characteristics of Dracula and Elvis - Lord Vetinari has sprung to life in the most alarmingly joyful way”

James Fleet says: “I’m delighted to be playing the Archchancellor. I think the writing and design catch the spirit of Terry Pratchett’s work and create a world of jeopardy and humour.”

Ingrid Oliver says: “It’s a joy to be part of The Watch and take on the role of Doctor Cruces. She’s such a fascinating character and pretty badass.”

Ruth Madeley says: “I'm so excited to be part of a world that Sir Terry Pratchett created. The character of Throat was male in the original books so for the team to cast me was extra exciting. I'm really looking forward to seeing how Throat develops and what mischief she can bring.”

The stellar line up will join the previously announced cast of Richard Dormer (Captain Sam Vimes), Adam Hugill (Constable Carrot), Jo Eaton-Kent (Constable Cheery), Marama Corlett (Corporal Angua), Lara Rossi (Lady Sybil Ramkin), and Sam Adewunmi (Carcer Dun).

Also announced today, Brian Kelly (Outlander, Poldark) and Emma Sullivan (Silent Witness, Doctor Who) have joined Craig Viveiros as directors for the series. The show’s lead writer is Simon Allen (The Musketeers, Das Boot).

The Watch is produced by BBC Studios and Narrativia for BBC AMERICA. It is executive produced by Richard Stokes (Torchwood, Broadchurch), Hilary Salmon (Luther, Three Girls) and Ben Donald (The Mallorca Files) for BBC Studios, Rob Wilkins (Good Omens) for Narrativia, Simon Allen and Craig Viveiros. Johann Knobel (Noughts and Crosses, Shameless) is series producer, and Simon Rogers (Doctor Foster, The Thick of It) is production designer. Director of Photography is John Pardue (Luther, Stan Lee's Lucky Man). Costume Designers are Colleen Kelsall (Tolkien, Doctor Thorne) and Dihantus Engelbrecht (Noughts and Crosses), and Hair and Make Up Designer is Amanda Ross-McDonald (Black Sails, Strike Back). The Watch was commissioned for BBC AMERICA by Sarah Barnett, President, AMC Network’s Entertainment Group & AMC Studios, when she served as President and GM of the network. BBC Studios is handling distribution internationally.

The Watch, comprised of eight episodes, is currently filming in South Africa and is part of BBC AMERICA’s 2020 slate that includes the return of the award-winning series Killing Eve, Jodie Whittaker’s second season of Doctor Who and the landmark Sir David Attenborough-fronted series Seven Worlds, One Planet.

The cast of The Watch

The Cast of The Watch

RICHARD DORMER LEADS BBC AMERICA’S NEXT ORIGINAL SERIES, THE WATCH

Inspired by Sir Terry Pratchett’s Bestselling “Discworld” Novels

Adam Hugill, Jo Eaton-Kent, Marama Corlette, Lara Rossi and Sam Adewunmi join cast ahead of start of production on September 30

New York – September 11, 2019 – Critically acclaimed actor and playwright Richard Dormer (Game of Thrones) is set to lead the cast of BBC AMERICA’s new original scripted series, The Watch, co-produced by Narrativia and BBC Studios.

Set in the fictional city of Ankh-Morpork, where crime has been legalized, The Watch is a uniquely anarchic drama. The series centers on a group of misfit cops as they rise up from decades of helplessness to save their corrupt city from catastrophe. The Watch is an inclusive genre-bending series inspired by the legendary ‘City Watch’ subset of Sir Terry Pratchett’s bestselling “Discworld” novels and its many iconic characters.

Also joining the cast are Adam Hugill (1917), Jo Eaton-Kent (Don’t Forget The Driver), Marama Corlette (Blood Drive) and Lara Rossi (Crossing Lines) together with Sam Adewunmi (The Last Tree).

Richard Dormer stars as Sam Vimes, Captain of The Watch, disempowered by a broken society that’s reduced his department’s jurisdiction to almost nothing. Jo Eaton-Kent is Constable Cheery, the ingenious non-binary forensics expert, ostracized by their kin and finding a new home and identity. Adam Hugill plays Constable Carrot, the idealistic new recruit, raised by dwarfs, but really a human abandoned at birth. Marama Corlette is the mysterious Corporal Angua who is tasked with Carrot’s training and keeping the rookie alive.  Lara Rossi plays the formidable Lady Sybil Ramkin, last scion of Ankh-Morpork’s nobility, who’s trying to fix the city’s wrongs with her chaotic vigilantism. Sam Adewunmi is the wounded and wronged Carcer Dun, out to hijack destiny itself, take control of the city and exact a terrible revenge on an unjust reality.

The Watch, comprised of eight episodes, begins filming in Cape Town, South Africa on September 30th and is part of BBC AMERICA’s 2020 slate that includes the Emmy®-nominated Killing Eve, Jodie Whittaker’s second season of Doctor Who and Seven Worlds, One Planet, presented by Sir David Attenborough. 

Produced for BBC AMERICA by BBC Studios and Narrativia, the show’s lead writer is Simon Allen (The Musketeers). Joining Allen as writers on the series are Joy Wilkinson (Doctor Who), Catherine Tregenna (Torchwood), Amrou Al-Khadi (Little America) and Ed Hime (Skins). Craig Viveiros (Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None) is set to direct.

Richard Dormer says: I’m so thrilled to be part of this brilliant madness and mayhem! I was immediately drawn to the multitude of layers to Sam Vimes, and I find the dynamic between him and his band of disenfranchised comrades very compelling.”

AMC Network’s Entertainment Group & AMC Studios President Sarah Barnett says: “The Watch will be a very BBC America show. As with Killing Eve, we don’t go straight at an adaptation - we blur genres, undercut with humor, and hire the most genius writers and actors to create stories and characters that are both entertaining and very contemporary, that say something new. Richard Dormer will kill it as Sam Vines, not your everyday male anti-hero. Simon Allen and Rob Wilkins approach this adaptation with the kind of iconoclastic energy and open-hearted love that will truly honor the indelible legacy of Sir Terry.”

Director and executive producer, Craig Viveiros says: “The script for The Watch is like nothing I have ever read before. It’s anarchic, it’s noisy and raspy, and I am really looking forward to bringing it to life on screen. With such a talented line up of cast and crew together we can make something ground-breaking.”   

Lead writer and executive producer, Simon Allen says: “Sir Terry Pratchett is in the bloodstream of popular culture. He has a distinctly British kind of literary heart and humor, but his ideas are defiantly human and universal. It’s been such a privilege to work with our world-class director, producers and writers on building a television show that honors his legacy while striking out on its own in his name and spirit. Like the man whose genius inspired it, The Watch is a hopeful show that believes it’s better to light a candle than curse the darkness. I can't wait for everybody to see our joyously brilliant cast light candles and, of course, flamethrowers.”

The Watch was commissioned for BBC AMERICA by Sarah Barnett, President, AMC Network’s Entertainment Group & AMC Studios when she served as President and GM of the network. The series is executive produced by Hilary Salmon (Luther), Ben Donald (The Mallorca Files) and Richard Stokes (Torchwood) for BBC Studios, Rob Wilkins (Good Omens) for Narrativia, Simon Allen and Craig Viveiros. Johann Knobel (Shameless) is series producer of The Watch, and Simon Rogers (Doctor Foster) is production designer. BBC Studios is handling distribution internationally. 

About BBC AMERICA:

BBC AMERICA is a hub of innovative, culturally contagious programming including the Peabody Award-winning series Killing Eve starring Golden Globe® and SAG® Award-winner Sandra Oh and BAFTA Award-winner Jodie Comer. The network is the definitive home and co-producer of the most iconic natural history programming including Planet Earth II, Blue Planet II, Dynasties, the upcoming Sir David Attenborough-narrated series Seven Worlds, One Planet and the return of the Emmy®-winning series Frozen Planet II and Planet Earth III- all a part of the new Saturday nature television destination, Wonderstruck, launching Q4 2019.  A joint venture between AMC Networks and BBC Studios (the commercial arm of the BBC), BBCA’s influential shows such as Doctor Who, Orphan Black, Luther and Broadchurch, among many others, have attracted critical acclaim and earned Emmy® Awards, Peabody Awards, Critics’ Choice Awards, TCA Awards, NAACP Image Awards, an IDA Documentary Award, a Gotham Award and Golden Globes®. Created in 1998, the irrepressible network has garnered one of cable’s most curious, educated and affluent audiences, with many properties boasting super-fan levels of engagement. Its unscripted slate includes the iconic car show Top Gear, buzzy and hilarious The Graham Norton Show and the world’s biggest darts championships. Get caught up, BBCA offers full episodes On Demand across all major digital platforms, BBC AMERICA app and bbcamerica.com. Find out more by visiting press.amcnetworks.com.

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About BBC Studios:

BBC Studios, a global content company with British creativity at its heart, is a commercial subsidiary of the BBC Group.  Able to take an idea seamlessly from thought to screen, it spans content financing, development, production, sales, branded services, and ancillaries from both its own productions and programmes and formats made by high-quality UK independents. Award-winning British programmes made by the business are internationally recognised across a broad range of genres and specialisms, including factual, drama, entertainment and comedy. BBC Studios has offices in 22 markets globally, including six production bases in the UK and production bases and partnerships in a further nine countries around the world. The company, which makes around 2,500 hours of content a year, is a champion for British creativity around the world and a committed partner for the UK’s independent sector. BBC Studios produces multi-award-winning dramas loved by audiences around the world, including Doctor Who, Luther and Les Miserables. It works with the best established and new drama talent, from writers and directors to on-screen talent, to create original, bold and ambitious British drama. BBC Studios are also the makers of Good Omens, based on the Sir Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman novel, co-produced with Narrativia, The Blank Corporation and Amazon.  Created in April 2018 by the merger of two existing commercial subsidiaries, BBC Worldwide and BBC Studios, the company has revenue of around £1.4bn.  In the year to March 2019, it returned £243m to the BBC Group, complementing the BBC’s licence fee and enhancing programmes for UK audiences.

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Concept art for The Watch by Discworld artist Paul Kidby

Concept art for The Watch by Discworld artist Paul Kidby

BBC AMERICA GREENLIGHTS ORIGINAL SCRIPTED SERIES THE WATCH

New Punk Rock Thriller is Based on Sir Terry Pratchett’s “Discworld” Novels

New York – October 30, 2018 – On the heels of hit series Killing Eve and the introduction of the first female Doctor on Doctor Who, BBC AMERICA announced today the greenlight of the new original scripted series, The Watch, based on Sir Terry Pratchett’s wildly popular “Discworld” novels, which have sold more than 90 million books worldwide. The (8 x 60) series is produced by BBC Studios for BBC AMERICA. The Watch is distributed by BBC Studios.

The Watch is a punk rock thriller inspired by the legendary ‘City Watch’ subset of “Discworld” novels. This disruptive, character-driven thriller centers on Terry Pratchett’s misfit cops as they fight to save a ramshackle city of normalized wrongness, from both the past and future in a perilous quest. Modern and inclusive, The Watch features many famous “Discworld” creations including City Watch Captain Sam Vimes, the last scion of nobility Lady Sybil Ramkin, the naïve but heroic Carrot, the mysterious Angua and the ingenious non-binary forensics expert Cheery together with Terry Pratchett’s iconic characterization of Death.

The Watch was commissioned for BBC AMERICA by President and GM Sarah Barnett, and Nena Rodrigue, EVP of Original Programming, Acquisitions and Production. Co-produced with Narrativia and written by Simon Allen (The Musketeers, Das Boot and New Tricks), The Watch is executive produced by Hilary Salmon (Luther, Silent Witness and Three Girls), Ben Donald for BBC Studios and Rob Wilkins for Narrativia. Phil Collinson (Doctor Who) also joins the team as executive producer.

The Watch has been startlingly reimagined for television by writer Simon Allen, while still cleaving to the humor, heart and ingenuity of Terry Pratchett’s incomparably original work,” commented BBC AMERICA President, Sarah Barnett. “BBC AMERICA embraces what’s fresh and exhilarating in TV; we believe The Watch will astonish audiences.”

Writer Simon Allen said: “With events in our own world making the insanity of ‘Discworld’ seem outrageously familiar, there couldn’t be a better time to bring Terry’s fun, fire and fury back to the small screen or a better place than BBC AMERICA. I’m grateful to them, BBC Studios and especially Rob Wilkins at Narrativia who has been a constant source of inspiration on this epic and emotional journey.”

Hilary Salmon, Executive Producer and Head of BBC Studios Drama Production London, said: “The Watch is a distinctly British but defiantly global exhilarating, thriller that is disruptive in its approach to the fantasy genre and also big on the themes of mortality, inclusion, alternative facts and justice. It’s a dizzying riot of hope, joy, suspense and audaciously dark humor. We can’t wait to work with BBC AMERICA to bring it all to life for existing fans and brand new audiences.”

Rob Wilkins, Executive Producer and Managing Director of Narrativia, said: “Many years ago Terry made the brave decision to allow brand new Watch stories to be told with his existing characters. It’s taken a long time for anything to happen because we guard these characters with our very lives! So many of Terry’s biggest ideas seem more vital and urgent now than ever before and I am thrilled to be working with Simon and such a talented team, who understand the unique genius of their creator. They have really keyed into the subversive qualities of Terry’s voice and they clearly adore ‘Discworld’ as much as I and millions of fans around the world do.”

The new series joins an outstanding offering of original scripted programming at BBC AMERICA including the Emmy®-nominated Killing Eve starring Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer, the iconic series Doctor Who starring Jodie Whittaker, and the Golden Globe®-winning Luther starring Idris Elba.

BBC Studios produces multi-award-winning dramas loved by audiences around the world, including Doctor Who, Luther and War and Peace. It works with the best established and new drama talent, from writers and directors to on-screen talent, to create original, bold and ambitious British drama. BBC Studios is also making Good Omens, based on the Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman novel, co-produced with Narrativia, The Blank Corporation and Amazon.

NOTES TO EDITORS

BBC AMERICA is a hub of innovative, culturally contagious programming including the critically acclaimed series Killing Eve starring Emmy®-nominee Sandra Oh, Jodie Comer and from Emmy®-nominee Phoebe Waller-Bridge; top-rated phenomenon Doctor Who starring Jodie Whittaker; Emmy® and IDA-winning Planet Earth II and the producers’ next epic story of our planet, Dynasties; Emmy®-winning Blue Planet II; acclaimed drama Luther starring Golden Globe®-winner Idris Elba; ground-breaking unscripted series Top Gear; buzzy and hilarious The Graham Norton Show; and the world’s biggest darts championships. A joint venture between BBC Studios (the commercial arm of the BBC) and AMC Networks, BBCA’s influential shows such as Orphan Black and Broadchurch, among many others, have attracted critical acclaim and earned Emmy® Awards, Peabody Awards, Critics’ Choice Awards, TCA Awards and Golden Globes®. Created in 1998, the irrepressible network has garnered one of cable’s most curious, educated and affluent audiences, with many properties boasting super-fan levels of engagement. Get caught up, BBCA offers full episodes On Demand across all major digital platforms, BBC AMERICA app and bbcamerica.com. Find out more by visiting press.bbcamerica.com. BBCA on social: YouTubeTwitterInstagramFacebookTumblr – Snapchat: BBCAmerica_TV

ABOUT BBC STUDIOS

BBC Studios, a global content company with British creativity at its heart, is a commercial subsidiary of the BBC Group. Formed in April 2018 by the merger of BBC Worldwide and BBC Studios, it spans content financing, development, production, sales, branded services and ancillaries. BBC Studios’ award-winning British programmes are internationally recognised across a broad range of genres and specialisms. It has offices in 22 markets globally, including seven production bases in the UK, and a further nine wholly-owned and production partnerships internationally. The company, which makes 2500 hours of content a year, is a champion for British creativity around the world and a committed partner for the UK’s independent sector. BBC Studios has revenue of £1.4bn, and returns around £200m to the BBC Group annually, complementing the BBC’s licence fee and enhancing programmes for UK audiences.
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ABOUT THE WRITER

Simon Allen is the showrunner of The Watch, an irreverent 8 x ’60 remix of Terry Pratchett’s “Discworld” novels for BBC AMERICA. He recently served as a writer/producer on the remake of Das Boot for Sky Atlantic and Sonar Entertainment having been a showrunner on The Musketeers for BBC One. He has worked on multiple high-profile shows including Strike Back for Sky/HBO, Frank Spotnitz’s Hunted for BBC One/HBO, and Spotless for Canal Plus/Netflix.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Terry Pratchett was the acclaimed creator of the global bestselling “Discworld” series, the first of which was published in 1983. With more than 90 million books sold worldwide, translated into 38 languages, Pratchett's writing has created a literary phenomenon across the globe. His books have been widely adapted for stage and screen, and he was the winner of multiple prizes and accolades, including the Carnegie Medal, and the award of a Knighthood for services to literature. He died in March 2015.

ABOUT NARRATIVIA

Narrativia is an independent production company, launched in 2012 by Sir Terry Pratchett. The company owns and controls the exclusive multimedia and merchandising rights to all of Sir Terry's works, including his “Discworld” characters and creations. The company is headed by Managing Director Rob Wilkins and celebrated writer Rhianna Pratchett.