Adapted from Ian McGuire’s acclaimed novel of the same name, new BBC drama The North Water tells the story of a group of men in the late 1850s who are forced to fight for survival amid freezing temperatures after a whaling expedition in the Arctic goes awry. Complete with an all-star cast, the series looks set to become one of the must-watch TV moments of the year. With the BBC having just dropped new pictures of the hotly anticipate drama (some of which you can find below), here’s everything else we know so far about The North Water.
When Does The North Water Air?
The BBC is yet to confirm an exact release date of The North Water. However, the series is currently scheduled to begin airing on BBC Two in Autumn 2021.
As Radio Times reports, production on the drama began in November 2019, with filming taking place on location in the Arctic and Budapest. In March 2020, production was temporarily paused in light of the coronavirus pandemic, and the remaining scenes were later completed in the UK.
The series will consist of three one-hour-long episodes and a 90-minute finale, all of which will eventually air on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer.
What’s The Plot Of The North Water?
As mentioned, the series is adapted from Ian McGuire’s novel The North Water. Set in 1850s Hull, the drama revolves around the character of the disgraced ex-army surgeon, Patrick Sumner, who, while in search of redemption, joins a whaling expedition to the Arctic. Summer is joined on the ship by the harpooner and dangerous killer, Henry Drax — and when the true nature of the voyage becomes clear, the ill-fated journey takes a turn for the worse, and those on board are forced to fight for their lives in the brutal Arctic wasteland.
Who’s In The Cast Of The North Water?
Per Radio Times, the BBC drama’s impressive cast is led by Money Monster and Skins star Jack O’Connell and Fantastic Beasts star Colin Farrell (who looks unrecognisable with long hair, a unkempt beard, and scars on his face). They will portray the central characters of Patrick Sumner and Henry Dax, respectively.
Elsewhere, the cast of The North Water also includes Line of Duty’s Stephen Graham, Outlaw King’s Sam Spruell, Atomic Blond star Roland Møller, The Bay’s Philip Hill-Pearson, King of Thieves’ Tom Courtenay, and Top of the Lake star Peter Mullan, among others.
In a statement, Boardwalk Empire star Graham shared details of the “incredible experience” of filming on location in the Arctic. “To be so privileged to see such beautiful animals like polar bears in their natural habitat — albeit an ever-changing one, sadly — was truly remarkable,’ the actor commented.
Elsewhere, co-star Tom Courtenay, who plays ship owner Baxter in the forthcoming drama, said he is “thrilled” to have worked with the series director Andrew Haigh on “such epic material.”
The North Water is expected to air on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer in Autumn 2021.