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See First Photo of Kenneth Branagh as Boris Johnson

Manori Ravindran
·2-min read

Sky has unveiled the first look at Kenneth Branagh playing U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson in the forthcoming drama “This Sceptred Isle.”

The British “Tenet” star, whose casting was first announced in January, is virtually unrecognizable as the 56-year-old Johnson. Produced by Fremantle, Richard Brown’s Passenger and Winterbottom’s Revolution Films, the Michael Winterbottom-directed show is now in production.

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“This Sceptred Isle,” which was announced in June 2020, will chart the events surrounding Johnson and his government in the face of the first wave of the global pandemic. The U.K. leader in late March was hospitalized with COVID-19 for over a week, with a number of days spent in intensive care.

“The first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic will be remembered forever,” said writer and director Winterbottom. “A time when the country came together to battle an invisible enemy. A time when people were more aware than ever of the importance of community. Our series weaves together countless true stories — from Boris Johnson in Number 10 to front line workers around the country — chronicling the efforts of scientists, doctors, care home workers and policy makers to protect us from the virus.”

The show promises to “tell the tale of some of the most devastating events to ever befall the United Kingdom, and of a Prime Minister leading in these unprecedented times.” The series will cover the impact of the virus, and the response of the country’s medical community to overcome the pandemic. It’s based on the first-hand testimony from members of the government, the Department of Health, the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE), and hospitals and care homes across the country.

The Sky Original drama will air on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW TV in 2022.

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