Tom Hardy, Ridley Scott Team for BBC Drama

By Rosser, Michael | Screen International, April 4, 2014 | Go to article overview

Tom Hardy, Ridley Scott Team for BBC Drama


Rosser, Michael, Screen International


Ridley Scott and Tom Hardy to executive produce period drama Taboo from Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight, financed by the BBC and Sonar Entertainment.

The BBC has commissioned a major new period drama starring Tom Hardy, who will also executive produce the series with acclaimed director Ridley Scott.

The 8 x 60-minute drama, titled Taboo, will be produced by Scott Free London and Hardy Son & Baker for BBC1 and Sonar Entertainment, which is distributing the series outside the UK.

Set in 1813, the story follows James Keziah Delaney (Hardy), a rogue adventurer who returns from Africa with 14 ill-gotten diamonds to seek vengeance after the death of his father.

Refusing to sell the family business to the East India Company, he sets out to build his own trade and shipping empire and finds himself playing a dangerous game with two warring nations, Britain and America.

The shoot is scheduled to take place in the UK from January 2015.

Taboo was created by Steven Knight, the writer behind BBC2 gangster drama Peaky Blinders that Hardy is due to join in the second series. The two also worked together on Locke, a feature film written and directed by Knight during which Hardy is the only actor seen on screen.

Packed with darkness

Hardy, the star of films including The Dark Knight Rises, Inception and Warrior, said: "We're creating a flagship British drama for this generation.

The actor also described the new series as "a hybrid of orthodox and unconventional storytelling, packed with darkness and spirited characters".

"I think Steve Knight and Ridley Scott are the perfect partners and the BBC the perfect home for this hugely exciting and compelling project," he added.

Iconic character

Scott, best known for his work directing features such as Alien, Blade Runner and Gladiator, said of Taboo: "This is a period in British history where the rising power of the Empire seeped into every dark corner. …

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