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Tom Hardy and Ridley Scott unite for TV drama Taboo

Warrior, Tom Hardy

Story by Jack Foley

TOM Hardy is to unite with director Sir Ridley Scott for a BBC One period drama about the East India Company.

Taboo is an eight-part series that will see the British actor playing a rogue adventurer who sets out to build a shipping empire, pitting him against the East India Company.

Hardy actually wrote the original story with his father Chips and has described it as “a flagship British drama for this generation”.

Sir Ridley added: “This is a period in British history where the rising power of the Empire seeped into every dark corner.”

He predicted that Hardy’s central character will become iconic.

Hardy also worked with acclaimed screenwriter Steven Knight on the script, having previously collaborated with him on the forthcoming film Locke and the TV series Peaky Blinders, which Hardy is joining for its forthcoming second season.

Knight described Hardy’s lead character, James Delaney, as someone who is both deeply flawed and troubled.

“His greatest struggle will be against the East India Company which, throughout the 19th Century, was the equivalent of the CIA, the NSA and the biggest, baddest multinational corporation on earth, all rolled into one self-righteous, religiously motivated monolith,” he explained.

Shooting on the anticipated event series will begin in 2015.

Ben Stephenson, controller of BBC drama commissioning, said he was “thrilled” to see Hardy and Knight reunited on the series, adding: “This is a major and ambitious undertaking for the BBC, reinforcing our commitment to be the best home for creative talent.”

Hardy is now one of Britain’s most talented and popular actors, having become a well-known name for roles as the villain Bane in The Dark Knight Rises and one of the heroes of Christopher Nolan’s Inception.

He can shortly be seen in James Gandolfini’s final film The Drop, as well as the lead in the forthcoming Mad Max reboot, Fury Road. He is also playing Elton John in the Rocketman biopic.

Sir Ridley is best known for the iconic films Alien, Blade Runner and Gladiator.

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