Why do bad films happen to good actors? Case in point, Jamie Dornan. Bafta-nominated and one of Northern Ireland’s finest talents who ended up enmeshed in the laughable S&M trilogy, Fifty Shades, followed by a stint in Trolls World Tour, then as a quirky Oirish dreamboat in the much-derided Wild Mountain Thyme. Where are all his recent roles with actual clout?
Happily, Dornan’s next move could prove to be an extremely wise one indeed. He’s headed back to the small screen (after his breakthrough role as psychopathic serial killer in The Fall) and is appearing in the new BBC Thriller, The Tourist, set in Australia and from the acclaimed writers of The Missing, Baptiste and Liar.
While the first pictures of a bearded Dornan Down Under have just dropped, here’s everything else we know about the enigmatic series so far:
What’s the big idea?
From the official synopsis, it kind of sounds like Killing Eve meets Memento, only set in Oz. Dornan stars as an elusive character known only as The Man, who “finds himself in the glowing red heart of the Australian outback, being pursued by a vast tank truck trying to drive him off the road.
“An epic cat-and-mouse chase unfolds and the man later wakes in hospital, hurt, but somehow alive. Except he has no idea who he is. With merciless figures from his past pursuing him, The Man’s search for answers propels him through the vast and unforgiving outback.” Gripping, right?
We’re told to expect lots of “shocking, funny and brutal turns” in the off-beat black comedy action series, but at the heart of the six-part series is an identity puzzle: who was The Man, who is he now and will he be able to work out his past before the future catches up to possibly kill him?
Dornan previously said he was pumped to be part of the project: “The Tourist are some of the most exciting scripts I've ever read. I can't wait to go to Australia with such a talented group of people.”
Who also stars in it?
Alongside Dornan is a cast of more stellar acting talents. Fresh from single-handedly carrying the entire AC-12 team in Line of Duty, Shalom Brune-Franklin will play Luci, a waitress who’s swept into The Man’s journey for answers.
Danielle Macdonald from Unbelievable and Dumplin’ will star as Helen Chambers, a fledgling Probationary Constable and Damon Herriman - who previously starred in Mindhunter - will play Agent Lachlan Rogers, a highly regarded detective inspector.
What do the filmmakers say about the series?
Writers Harry and Jack Williams of Two Brothers Pictures said: “We're hugely excited about this show. It's tonally breaking new ground for us, and having Jamie Dornan on board is the icing on the Australian cake.” The coconut dusting on a Lamington, perhaps? Although we’re sure Dornan would actually prefer another analogy, thanks.
Is there a trailer?
Not just yet, so you’ll just have to feast your eyes on these stills instead.
When can we expect it to hit the screens?
Not for a while yet - it’s likely to be the end of 2021, or early 2022.
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