2:00am PT by Kate Stanhope
Joanne Froggatt and Ioan Gruffudd to Topline Thriller 'Liar' for ITV and Sundance TV
Downton Abbey star Joanne Froggatt is returning to the small screen.
The Golden Globe winner and Ioan Gruffudd have signed on to star in the six-part mini Liar for Sundance TV and ITV, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Created and written by Harry and Jack Williams (The Missing), Liar tells the story of a night that changes the lives of two people forever.
Froggatt will play Laura, a smart and dedicated teacher, not long out of a relationship and unsure about getting back on the dating scene. Gruffudd is set to play Andrew, a renowned surgeon whose son is a student at Laura’s school. An initial attraction leads to a date, but neither fully realizes the far-reaching consequences that their meeting will have on each other or their families. Truth and consequences go hand in hand as the thriller examines both sides of a relationship and both sides of the truth to find out if there are really two sides to every story.
Harry and Jack Williams will executive produce through their Two Brothers Pictures, which is producing in conjunction with ITV. Lead director James Strong (Broadchurch) will also exec produce, with Eliza Mellor (Poldark) attached to produce. Sam Donovan (Humans) will direct episodes four through six. Filming on the six hourlong installments will begin in London and Kent, England, in November. ITV’s new head of drama, Polly Hill, will oversee production.
“I am so delighted to have arrived at ITV and to be working with Jack and Harry Williams on Liar,” said Hill, who previously served as BBC's drama chief. “They are brilliant storytellers who have written a gripping thriller that doesn't shy away from exploring a powerful subject. I'm thrilled we've commissioned Liar for ITV and secured such a terrific cast.”
Sundance TV has found success with several imported series, including The A Word from BBC and Gomorrah from Sky Italia.
"Liar is that rare combination of a thoughtful and emotional exploration of the human condition and a page-turner," said Joel Stillerman, AMC and Sundance TV president of original programming and development. "The Williams brothers have created something both relevant and compelling, attributes that the Sundance TV audience respect and embrace."
Liar was first unveiled in April by distributor All3Media International, which is handling international distribution for the project. Harry and Jack Williams are also working on the second season of anthology The Missing for BBC and Starz. Their credits also include the comedy Fleabag, which made its U.S. debut on Amazon earlier this month.
"We’re delighted to be reunited with Polly Hill in her new role at ITV and join forces with Sundance TV," said the Williams brothers. "This story deals with highly emotional and important subject matter, exploring modern issues of gender politics through the lens of a character-driven emotional thriller. We couldn’t be happier with the caliber of the team we have working on this."
Liar brings Froggatt back to ITV, where she stared on Downton Abbey for six seasons. She also recently starred in the TV movie Dark Angel and is filming the drama A Storm in the Stars, about Frankenstein writer Mary Shelley. She is repped by Conway van Gelder Grant in the U.K., UTA in the U.S. and Principal Entertainment LA.
Gruffudd, best known for 2005's Fantastic Four, recently recurred on season two of UnREAL. He is repped by ICM, Framework Entertainment and Nelson Davis.