Anne Boleyn cast: Who is Jodie Turner-Smith? Actor to play Henry VIII’s wife

Anne Boleyn: Jodie Turner-Smith stars in Channel 5 trailer

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Channel 5 is expanding its drama content with a new series focusing on Anne Boleyn in the final months of her life before she was beheaded. The three-part series will look at her downfall through what Deadline has described “the prism of a psychological thriller” rather than a buttoned-up period drama. British model and actress Jodie Turner-Smith has been cast in the lead role, which has the working title Anne Boleyn – looks at the star and where you may have seen her before.

Who is Jodie Turner-Smith?

Turner-Smith is a British actress and model from Peterborough, Cambridgeshire.

The 34-year-old later moved to America with her mother after her parents divorced.

She initially wanted to become a writer but was urged by musician Pharrell Williams to pursue a career in modelling, which led her to move to LA.

Turner-Smith appeared in campaigns and music videos for the likes of Zayn Malik’s Pillowtalk and The Dream featuring Kanye West’s Walkin’ On The Moon.

The star previously recalled on The Graham Norton Show how nervous she was when she unexpectedly found herself working with The Dream and West after initially going to meet with a fashion designer in LA.

She went on to land roles in HBO’s True Blood, The Last Ship and Syfy and Netflix’s series Nightflyers.

Turner-Smith has also starred in the Cinemax series Jett as a character called Josie.

However, it was her role in Queen & Slim starring opposite Daniel Kaluuya, which propelled her into the spotlight.

According to IMDb, Turner-Smith will next be featuring in Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse, After Yang and Borderlander.

Outside of her career, Turner-Smith is married to The Affair and Dawson’s Creek actor Joshua Jackson after the pair started dating in 2018.

They have one daughter together, who was born in April 2020.

Turner-Smith revealed to W Magazine earlier this year how her first onscreen crush was her now-husband’s character Pacey Witter on Dawson’s Creek.

Anne Boleyn has already been described as “convention-defying” and for its choice of casting, which will offer a refreshing take on story which has been done many times before.

Previous version of this story have included the BBC’s adaptation of Wolf Hall with The Crown’s Claire Foy winning a BAFTA for her performance as the fateful English Queen and Natalie Portman in the movie The Other Boleyn Girl.

This will be the first time a black actress has taken on the role of Anne Boleyn in a TV version of this tragic tale.

The show will explore Boleyn’s struggles against the patriarchal society of Tudor Britain as well as trying to ensure a future for her daughter Elizabeth.

She will also be dealing with the fundamental failure to provide her husband with a male heir to the throne.

Along with Turner-Smith, Anne Boleyn will feature Press and I May Destroy You’s Paapa Essiedu, Amanda Burton of Silent Witness and White House Farm fame, and Two Weeks To Live’s Thalissa Teixeira.

Further cast members include Barry Ward from White Lines and Hamilton’s Jamael Westman.

Anne Boleyn has been penned by actress and writer Eve Hedderwick Turner, who according to IMDb has previously worked on Alice Through The Looking Glass, Casualty and Blandings.

The show hasn’t got a release date as yet, but it looks like it could be some time in 2021 after Anne Boleyn was first teased at the Edinburgh TV Festival over the summer.

Anne Boleyn is in production

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