The cast includes Harry Potter alums Michael Gambon, who played Dumbledore in five of the Harry Potter films, and Simon McBurney, who voiced Kreacher in the Deathly Hallows films, along with many other notable British performers. Read below for the full press release and cast list.
The Casual Vacancy centers around the drama of a small English town, Pagford, throughout a parish council election following the death of beloved council member. The miniseries will be written by Sarah Phelps and produced by BBC One in collaboration with HBO (for American and international audiences). It is set to film later this summer in southwest England; no air date has been announced for the project yet.
The full BBC press release:
The confirmed cast includes Michael Gambon, Keeley Hawes, Rory Kinnear, Monica Dolan, Julia McKenzie, and introduces Abigail Lawrie.
BAFTA Award-winning actor Michael Gambon (Quirke, The Singing Detective) is set to play Howard Mollison, owner of the Pagford delicatessen, with Julia McKenzie (Notes On A Scandal, Shirley Valentine) playing his wife Shirley. Howard’s son Miles is being played by Rufus Jones (Bill, W1A) with his wife Samantha Mollison being played by Keeley Hawes (Line Of Duty, Ashes To Ashes). Rory Kinnear (Skyfall, Penny Dreadful), who recently won the Olivier Award for Best Actor for his role as Iago in Nicholas Hytner’s production of Othello at the National Theatre, is to play Barry Fairbrother, Keeley Forsyth (Coronation Street, Emmerdale) is playing Terri Weedon with newcomer Abigail Lawrie cast as her daughter Krystal Weedon.
Monica Dolan (Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa, Sightseers), who won a BAFTA Award for her portrayal of Rose West in Julian Jarrold’s Appropriate Adult, will play Tess Wall with Simon McBurney (Tinker Taylor Soldier Spy, Last King Of Scotland) playing her husband Colin Wall. Richard Glover (A Field In England, Sightseers) has been cast to play Simon Price alongside Marie Critchley (In The Flesh, Emmerdale) playing his wife Ruth Price. Michelle Austin (Secrets & Lies, Another Year) will play Kay Bawden.
Other cast soon to be announced includes Parminder, Vikram and Sukhvinder Jawanda, Gaia Bawden, and other key characters including Mary Fairbrother, Maureen Lowe, Lexie and Libby Mollison, and Andrew and Paul Price.
The BBC One miniseries, in association with HBO, is an adaptation of JK Rowling’s global bestseller The Casual Vacancy and consists of three one-hour parts. Production begins on 7 July in South West England.
The Casual Vacancy centres on Pagford, a seemingly idyllic English village with a cobbled market square and ancient abbey. Behind the pretty façade, however, is a town at war: rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils.
The Casual Vacancy is being produced by Bronte Film and Television, the independent production company run by JK Rowling and Neil Blair, who is executive producing with Paul Trijbits (Saving Mr. Banks, Golden Globe winner Dancing On The Edge”) and Rick Senat. It was commissioned by Danny Cohen, Director of BBC Television, and Ben Stephenson, Controller of BBC Drama.
The miniseries is written by Sarah Phelps (the BBC’s Great Expectations and The Crimson Field), produced by Ruth Kenley-Letts (The Tunnel, the Emmy winner The Hour) and will be directed by Jonny Campbell (BAFTA winning mini series In the Flesh, BAFTA winner Eric & Ernie). Lucy Bevan (Maleficent, Cinderella) is the show’s Casting Director. Tony Slater-Ling (The Politician’s Husband, In The Flesh) is the show’s Director of Photography. Production Design is by Sami Khan (Catch Me Daddy), the Costume Designer is Rhona Russell (Scott and Bailey) and Editor Tom Hemmings (Misfits, The Tunnel).
JK Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy has sold more than six million copies worldwide since its publication in 2012.