Follow Us on Twitter

James Nesbitt to star in BBC1's Northern Irish crime thriller Bloodlands


Story by Jack Foley

JAMES Nesbitt (The Missing, Cold Feet) will star in Bloodlands, a major original crime drama for BBC One.

Created by exciting new writer Chris Brandon, the series will kick off when a car containing a possible suicide note is pulled out of Strangford Lough, prompting Northern Irish police detective Tom Brannick (Nesbitt) to quickly connect it to an infamous cold case with enormous personal significance.

Bloodlands subsequently follows his dogged hunt for a legendary assassin, an explosive cat-and-mouse game where the stakes have never been higher.

Bloodlands marks Chris Brandon’s first original drama series commission and the first drama from newly formed production company HTM Television. It was commissioned by Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama and Charlotte Moore, Controller of BBC Content.

The executive producers include Jed Mercurio (of Line of Duty and Bodyguard fame).

Nesbitt commented: “It’s great to be back making a drama in and about Northern Ireland, which now has a film and television industry as good as any in the world. We have compelling scripts from a brilliant young writer who was raised in County Down, which are very exciting and psychologically complex. I can’t wait to start.”

Brandon said: “I’m absolutely delighted that the first opportunity I get to tell a story on this scale, it is one that is so close to home and the people and places that raised me. On top of that, to be telling it with James Nesbitt, Jed Mercurio and the incredible team at HTM is a total privilege.”

Mercurio, Executive Producer for HTM Television, added: “It’s been incredibly rewarding to discover Chris Brandon’s work and to witness the development of an outstanding new voice in contemporary television thriller writing, added to which everyone at HTM Television is honoured an actor of James Nesbitt’s brilliance will star in our debut production.”

Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama, said: “In Bloodlands, Chris has crafted a cracking contemporary thriller which manages to be both completely gripping while shining a light on to the legacy of the troubles in contemporary Northern Ireland. We are thrilled to be working with Chris, Jimmy, Jed and the team at HTM to bring this visceral story to BBC One.”

Bloodlands will be directed by Pete Travis (Omagh, The Go-Between) and produced by Christopher Hall (The Durrells, Critical).

Further casting will be announced in due course.