‘I’m relishing the prospect’ - Timothy Spall leads cast in new comedy drama

Virgin Radio

20 May 2024, 07:12

Credit: Getty / Press

Fresh from his BAFTA win, Timothy Spall has been announced for a brand new BBC series.

The actor, who scored Best Actor at the TV BAFTA Awards for his performance in BBC One’s disturbing and emotional drama The Sixth Commandment, will star in comedy drama Death Valley.

Written and created by BAFTA-nominated Paul Doolan (Mammoth, Trollied) and set in Wales, the six-part series will also star Gwyneth Keyworth from Hidden.



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The narrative follows the unlikely crime-solving partnership between eccentric national treasure John Chapel (Spall), a retired actor and star of hit fictional detective TV show Caesar, and Welsh detective sergeant Janie Mallowan (Keyworth). 

The synopsis explains: “Thrown together by the murder of John’s neighbour, John and Janie are an odd, yet hilarious duo with opposing instincts. Every week, they get to the bottom of gripping murders, with various stunning Welsh locations providing a backdrop to their investigations.

“When John and Janie are not arguing about a case, they’re inevitably up in each other’s personal business. Despite their differences, they soon realise they are the closest thing each other has to a best friend, and unwittingly help one another move on from the past.”

In a statement, Timothy Spall, said: “I’m really looking forward to teaming up with the brilliant Gwyneth Keyworth and the fantastically talented team of creatives and technicians on this new and unique comedy drama.”

“I’m relishing the prospect of getting stuck in as we embark on creating this truly oddball detective duo who develop their unusual combined eccentric skills to hilarious and surprisingly successful effect in beautiful rural Wales and its gorgeous towns and villages.”

Jon Petrie, Director of Comedy at the BBC says: “This series has all the hallmarks of a BBC Comedy classic; it’s the perfect comedy drama caper which never forgets the funny. We feel thoroughly spoiled to have such a wonderful cast on board.”

When virginradio.co.uk spoke to The Sixth Commandment’s Eanna Hardwicke at the TV BAFTAs, he told us that not only is Timothy Spall “an astonishing actor, but he’s generous, he’s funny, [and] he’s really interesting to talk to.”

Talking to virginradio.co.uk and other press from the red carpet, he added: “When you work with actors like that, it makes it very easy.”

Each episode of Death Valley will run for 45 minutes and will be shown on BBC Two, BBC One Wales and BBC iPlayer. As yet, no release date has been announced.