Saturday 3 December 2016

Fionnula Flanagan, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Ian McElhinney join Eastenders Irish spin-off Redwater

Published 12/04/2016 | 11:20

Actress Fionnula Flanagan
Actress Fionnula Flanagan
Fionnula Flanagan

Eastenders' Irish spin-off Redwater has added a litany of top Irish names to the cast.

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Legendary Hollywood star Fionnula Flanagan has signed up as has Downton Abbey star Maria Doyle Kennedy, Game of Thrones favourite Ian McElhinney and The Commitments' Angeline Ball.

Danish director Jesper Nielsen of Borgen fame will be helming the six part series for the BBC.

The series will see Eastenders favourites Kat (Jessie Wallace) and Alfie (Shane Richie) heading to fictional Irish village Redwater to meet the Kelly and Dolan families in search of Kat's long-long son.

6th Annual
6th Annual "Oscar Wilde: Honoring The Irish In Film" Pre-Academy Awards Party - Arrivals...LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 24: Actress Maria Doyle Kennedy attends the 6th annual "Oscar Wilde: Honoring the Irish in Film" pre-Academy Awards party at the Ebell Club of Los Angeles on February 24, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)...E

"We have a really important and fantastic story to tell," says director Nielsen. "About how one woman's search for a lost child opens a Pandora's box, revealing the terrible lies and secrets in the little village of Redwater.

"A story about how the strong bonds of love in a family can hold everything together, and yet at the same time destroy everything. It has echoes of a Shakespearean drama, told in a rich cinematic style, loaded with humour and suspense. I cannot wait to start shooting and see the characters coming to life.”

Flanagan, who will play Kathleen Moon, says, "This is a fascinating character, full of secrets, deceit and manipulation. My favourite! It's a wonderful story which will keep you guessing forever and ever. Great writing and a fabulous director.”

Jessie Wallace adds, "I walked into the drama read-through to a table full of wonderful Irish actors and it was thrilling. They all made me feel so very welcome as we started to read the first script. It’s going to be a rollercoaster!”

SOAP STAR: Actress Angeline Ball
appearing on EastEnders
SOAP STAR: Actress Angeline Ball appearing on EastEnders

Also joining the cast are Peter Campion of Brooklyn fame, with Stanley Townsend, Oisin Stack, Stephen Hogan, Susah Ateh, Ian Toner and Ebony O'Toole-Acheampong.

Filming kicks off this week in The Déise and the series will broadcast on BBC One in 2017.

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