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Gemma Arterton lands coveted BBC Tess role

Gemma Arterton

Story by Jack Foley

NEW James Bond co-star Gemma Arterton has snapped up yet another coveted role just months after landing a plumb role in the new 007 movie. The Rada graduate is to play Tess Of The D’Ubervilles in a new BBC adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s acclaimed masterpiece.

The 22-year-old is currently one of the most sought after English actresses of the moment having been snapped up to play agent Fields in the next Bond caper, Quantum of Solace, which followed her head-turning performance in St Trinian’s.

Ironically, her St Trinian’s classmate – apologies, co-star – Jodie Whittaker will play Izzy, while Ruth Jones, of Gavin i& Stacey fame, is Tess’s mother Joan.

Whitakker is another hot new talent, having shot to prominence in the Oscar-nominated film Venus, alongside Leslie Phillips and Peter O’Toole.

Filming for Tess Of The D’Ubervilles is scheduled to begin later this month (March 2008) in England’s West Country, with a view to screening the four-hour costume drama as part of BBC1’s autumn line-up.

Tess Of The D’Urbervilles was named as Britain’s 12th favourite book in a poll for World Book Day last year, and has been adapted many times – most notably by Roman Polanski for a 1979 film starring Nastassja Kinski.

The BBC adaptation has been written by David Nicholls, whose credits include Cold Feet and the James McAvoy comedy Starter For Ten.

Arterton’s other credits include Stephen Poliakoff’s Capturing Mary [screened on BBC2], Love’s Labour’s Lost at London’s Globe Theatre and the forthcoming RocknRolla for director Guy Ritchie, in which she appears alongside Gerard Butler and Tom Wilkinson. She has also just completed the comedy Three And Out with Mackenzie Crook.

Find out more about her James Bond role or view pictures of Gemma at the recent 007 press conference or in character as agent Fields