UK 2023, 60 mins
Directors: Andy De Emmony, Joss Agnew

+ Q&A with Suranne Jones, Rose Leslie, Romola Garai, Dougray Scott, writer Tom Edge and executive producer Jake Lushington

Following multiple unexplained fatalities at a Scottish military facility, DCI Amy Silva (Suranne Jones) and DI Kirsten Longacre (Rose Leslie) are tasked with uncovering the cause. Entering the hostile and closed ranks of the air force, the pair must face the deadly warfare of tomorrow as they fight for their own future.

The first series of Vigil was the UK’s most-watched new drama launch since Bodyguard in 2018, attracting over 13 million viewers. Series one won the International Emmy and secured a BAFTA nomination for Best Drama Series. The first series of Vigil is available to watch on BBC iPlayer now.

Vigil (6x60’) series two is made by World Productions, an ITV Studios company, for the BBC. It is written and created by Tom Edge, with episodes by Maryam Hamidi, James Smythe and Ryan O’Sullivan and Matilda Wnek. Series two was directed by Andy De Emmony (The Nest, The Last Kingdom) and Joss Agnew (Deep State, Outlander). The producer is Marcus Wilson (Doctor Who, Luther) and associate producer is George Aza-Selinger. Executive producers are Simon Heath and Jake Lushington for World Productions, Gaynor Holmes for the BBC, and Tom Edge. International distribution is handled by ITV Studios.

Suranne Jones will soon grace our screens once again in BBC One’s Vigil, season 2. Jones most recently co-produced/starred in ITV’s drama series Maryland with Eve Best, which tells the story of two sisters reunited through the tragic event of losing their mother.

Jones has stamped her name in the industry playing strong woman. 2022 saw Jones star as Carole McKay in Sky’s Christmas Carole, a twist on the Dickens classic about a wealthy entrepreneur who is visited by ghosts Past, Present and Future. Jones starred in the historical drama BBC/HBO’s Gentleman Jack as a powerful 19th century lesbian landowner Anne Lister, which was nominated for a 2020 BAFTA. Jones previously won herself a BAFTA in 2016 for Best Leading Actress in Doctor Foster, ITV’s thriller about a woman suspecting her husband of having an affair which leads to an unravelling of events including a streak of violence. Having also been Associate and Executive Producer on both Doctor Foster and Scott & Bailey ­– the popular ITV drama where she played Rachel Bailey – Suranne has now set up her own production company Teamakers and is currently developing and producing her own projects.

Jones was also seen in Save Me opposite Lennie James and Stephen Graham for Sky Atlantic and Vanity Fair for ITV/Amazon. Other television work includes The Brian Pern Show, BBC’S The Crimson Field, Lawless, Touch of Cloth, Doctor Who, Unforgiven and Coronation Street.

Suranne’s theatre credits include Top Girls at Chichester Festival Theatre and in the West End, A Few Good Men at Theatre Royal Haymarket, for which she received the Theatregoers’ Choice Award for Best Supporting Actress, Blithe Spirit and Terms of Endearment. Suranne played the role of ‘Sandra’ in the 20th anniversary West End revival of Beautiful Thing at the Arts Theatre, as well as the title role in Orlando at the Royal Exchange in 2014

Rose Leslie graduated from LAMDA in 2008. In 2009 she won a Scottish BAFTA for Best New Talent for her role in New Town. The following year she went on to secure her first major TV role as Gwen Dawson in the first series of the award-winning period drama, Downton Abbey. Rose is well-known for her role as Ygritte in series 2-4 of the worldwide phenomenon, Game of Thrones. In 2015, Rose joined Idris Elba in the BBC’s critically acclaimed drama Luther. Following this, Rose starred in sci-fi thriller, Morgan, alongside Kate Mara, Toby Jones, Jennifer Jason-Leigh and Anya Taylor-Joy. She also voiced the character of Red Riding Hood in BBC One’s adaptation of Roald Dahl’s famed Revolting Rhymes. Rose starred opposite Ray Liotta in Sticky Notes, which premiered at the 2016 Edinburgh International Film Festival. Rose went on to star in the spin-off from the hugely popular US legal drama The Good Wife, The Good Fight. The premiere episode aired to rave reviews and won its time period, with 10.3 million viewers. Rose starred in series 1-3 of the critically acclaimed show. Rose appeared in Kenneth Branagh’s adaptation of Agatha Christie’s murder mystery, Death on the Nile. Rose was most recently seen opposite Theo James in The Time Traveler’s Wife, HBO/Sky’s drama series based on the novel by Audrey Niffenegger and adapted by Steven Moffat. Rose starred opposite Suranne Jones in BBC One’s submarine thriller Vigil. Rose will soon be seen in the highly anticipated second series.

Romola Garai is a BAFTA and Golden Globe nominated English actress, writer, and director who has worked extensively in film, theatre, and television. She is well known for her role as Briony in the 2007 Oscar-nominated film Atonement for which she was nominated Best Actress at the Evening Standard British Film Awards.

2023, has been a busy year for Romola, who was most recently seen playing the role of Juno Fish in The Following Events Are Based on a Pack of Lies series for the BBC. Previously to that she was cast in the Becoming Elizabeth historical drama series for Channel 4 in the UK and Starz the US. The series launched in late 2022. Coming up later this year, Romola will be starring in Vigil Series Two.

Romola will also be seen on the big screen in two films, starting with The Critic which had its world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival. Next is One Life, directed by James Hawes, it had its world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival. The film tells the story of a British stockbroker who helped rescue hundreds of children from Europe on the verge of the Second World War. Romola plays the role of Doreen Warriner opposite Helena Bonham Carter, Johnny Flynn, and Anthony Hopkins. The film is set to release in 2024.

Coming up next year in 2024, Romola will be seen in the Netflix film Scoop directed by Philip Martin which is based on the BBC Newsnight bombshell interview with Prince Andrew and presenter Emily Maitlis. Scoop is set to be released in Spring 2024.

Romola in recent years has moved into directing and her 2012 film Scrubber was nominated for Best International Short film at Sundance. She then made her first feature film debut in 2020 with her horror/mystery film Amulet by Magnolia Pictures, which Romola wrote and directed. The film had its premiere at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival and film critic Mark Kermode said Romola Garai’s room at the top hold’s untold horrors.

Romola is set to return to her directing role next year with period drama film Monstrous Beauty which she also wrote. The stellar cast includes Bella Ramsey, Dominic West, Ruth Negga and Fiona Shaw. Other notable work includes television projects such as Emma the 2009 BBC One four-part television series based on the adaptation of Jane Austen’s novel. Romola received a Golden Globe nomination for her portrayal of Emma. She was nominated Best Actress at the BAFTA TV awards in 2011 for her role in The Crimson Petal miniseries. Other works include: The Hour series for BBC Two and The Miniaturist for BBC directed by Guillem Morales

Further film credits include her portrayal of Cassandra in I Capture the Castle in 2003 which earned her a BIFA Most Promising Newcomer nomination. Romola then played the role of Siobhan in Inside I’m Dancing which gained her the British Supporting Actress of the Year award. Earwig directed by Lucile Hadžihalilović, Miss Marx in 2020 directed by Susanna Nicchiarelli and the award winning 2015 film Suffragette.

Emmy and BAFTA winning Scottish actor and producer Dougray Scott has built a distinguished career across film, television and on stage.

Dougray will next be seen in the second series of Tom Edge’s BBC Emmy winning and BAFTA nominated Vigil. Also this year, Dougray starred in Louise Archambault’s World War II drama Irena’s Vow.

In November 2021, Dougray starred as Detective Inspector Ray Lennox in the television adaptation of Irvine Welsh’s best-selling 2008 novel Crime. His role earned him an international Emmy Award for ‘Best Performance by an Actor’ and BAFTA Scotland ‘Actor – Television’ award. The series marks the second time that James Strong and Dougray have collaborated, after Dougray played ‘Matt Busby’ in BBC Film United, in 2011. The second series of the show aired on ITVX in September 2023, and is slated to air on ITV in the new year.

From January – February 2023, Dougray played the role of ‘George’ in Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, opposite Elizabeth McGovern at The Ustinov Studio in Bath. The production, directed by Lindsay Posner, garnered rave reviews, with The Daily Telegraph calling the production ‘a masterpiece’. Dougray appeared in SKY drama A Town Called Malice in March of the same year, directed by Jamie O’Donoghue.

In 2020 Dougray first starred in feature film Sulphur and White, directed by BAFTA and Emmy Award nominee Julian Jarrold and written by Susie Farrell. He then appeared in the Irish thriller Sea Fever.

In 2018, Dougray reprised the role of Vic Hill in the second series of Crackle/ AMC’s popular television series Snatch. Based on Guy Ritchie’s iconic film of the same name, the first series premiered in 2017 and was quickly recommissioned. The second series premiered in October 2018. In the same year Dougray appeared as Sir Percival Glyde in the BBC’s acclaimed adaptation of Wilkie Collins’ psychological thriller The Woman in White.

Dougray has also performed on stage, notably in Sam Mendes’ To the Green Fields Beyond at the Donmar Warehouse in 2000.

Other notable screen credits include; Terry Walsh in cult classic Twin Town in 1997; Eric Vennekor in Deep Impact in 1998; Prince Harry in Ever After: A Cinderella Story opposite Drew Barrymore in 1998; Sean Ambrose opposite Tom Cruise in the second instalment of the global franchise Mission Impossible in 2000; Thomas Jericho in Enigma in 2001; Johnathan Trevanny in Ripley’s Game in 2002; Iain Hainsworth in Desperate Housewives in 2006–2007; Mike Whitaker in Hitman in 2007; Michael O’Connor in the mini-series Father and Son in 2009; Arthur Miller in My Week With Marylin in 2011; Stuart St. John in Taken 3 in 2014; Nick Baker in London Town in 2016 and La Cha Cha, in 2021.

Tom Edge is an Emmy award-winning, five-times BAFTA-nominated screenwriter. He created the multi-award-winning series Vigil.

To date Tom has adapted five of the Cormoran Strike novels written by Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling), the latest of which was the four-part Strike: Troubled Blood. An adaptation of the latest book, The Ink Black Heart, begins filming early 2024.

Tom’s other TV work includes creating the romantic comedy Lovesick which ran for three seasons on Netflix. Amongst other credits he has written a four-part adaptation of Imran Mahmood’s novel You Don’t Know Me (BBC One/ Netflix), a Christmas Day single-drama for Sky, The Last Dragonslayer, and also worked on seasons one and two of The Crown (Netflix), notably writing the season two episode ‘Paterfamilias’, for which Stephen Daldry won the Emmy for Best Directing.

In film, Tom wrote the screenplay for the film Judy (dir. Rupert Goold). Playing Judy Garland, Renee Zellweger swept the 2019-20 awards season, winning the Golden Globe, BAFTA, SAG and Academy Award for Best Actress.

Jake Lushington began his career as a theatre director working at the Manchester Royal Exchange, the Royal Court and The Bush. In 1995 he became a script editor on EastEnders and first joined World Productions in 1997 as a script editor on This Life before returning to EastEnders for a further year as head storyliner.

Jake returned to World in 1998 as a development producer. Over the next two and a half year he developed and produced Black Cab for BBC2, Men Only for C4 and Table Twelve again for BBC2. In late 2000 Jake joined BoxTV, where he worked for three years, eventually becoming Head of Drama. During that time he produced Trust for BBC1, Reversals for ITV and Old Street for Film Four. He was also development producer on BBC1’s The Last Enemy. Going freelance in 2004 Jake produced Secret Smile for Granada and ITV, Mysterious Creatures for Leopard and ITV (Winner Best Single Drama Mental Health Awards) and Bon Voyage for Box and ITV (Winner Best International Mini Series at the Monte Carlo International Television Awards). Jake produced the pilot and the two subsequent films for long running George Gently detective series for Company Pictures and BBC1. He then produced Peter Flannery’s Civil War epic, The Devil’s Whore for Company and C4 (Winner South Bank Show, RTS Award, Press Guild Award and also BAFTA nominated).

Jake was then invited by Roger Charteris at Ken McCreddie Associates to start a drama slate at Marcus Evans Entertainment. In 2012 he rejoined World Productions as Head of Drama after an 11 year absence. Also in 2012 Jake developed and produced the first series of The Bletchley Circle for ITV/PBS. He then Executive Produced the second series of The Bletchley Circle in 2013. In 2015 he produced Dark Angel, again for ITV/PBS and in 2017 Executive Produced Born to Kill for Channel4 (RTS/C21 nominated). In 2018 he Executive Produced The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco for Britbox and ITV. Since then Jake has Executive Produced Vigil for BBC1 and The Suspect for ITV as well as the forthcoming The Hunt For Raoul Moat for ITV and Fifteen Love for Amazon Prime.

In his spare time Jake has also directed two short films, The North London Book of the Dead (2011) and Nipplejesus (2015) adapted, respectively, from Will Self and Nick Hornby’s short stories.

Writer, Creator and Executive Producer: Tom Edge
Directors: Andy De Emmony, Joss Agnew
Production Companies: World Productions, BBC
Executive producers for World Productions: Jake Lushington, Simon Heath
Executive Producer for the BBC: Gaynor Holmes
Commissioning Executive for the BBC: Stephanie Fyfe
Producer: Marcus Wilson
Associate Producer: George Aza-Selinger
Casting Director: Kahleen Crawford
Further Writers: Maryam Hamidi, James Smythe, Ryan O’Sullivan, Matilda Wnek
Directors of Photography: Matt Wicks, Nic Lawson
Editors: Richard Cox, Mark Elliot, Michael Harrowers
Production Designer: Mark Leese
Costume Designer: Kate Carin
Hair & Make-up Designer: Laura Hill

Suranne Jones (DCI Amy Silva)
Rose Leslie (DI Kirsten Longacre)
Gary Lewis (DSU Robertson)
Dougray Scott (Air Marshall Marcus Grainger)
Romola Garai (Acting Squadron Leader Eliza Russell)
Amir El-Masry (Daniel Ramsay)
David Elliot (Sutherland)
Oscar Salem (Captain Sattam Abdul Kader)
Chris Jenks (Callum Barker)
Jonathan Ajayi (Wes Harper)
Nebras Jamali (Colonel Ali Bilali)
Hiba Medina (Sabiha Chapman)
Tommy Sim’aan (Firas Zaman)
Noof Ousellam (DS Paul Townsend)
Steven Elder (Derek McCabe)
Khalid Laith Nicoel (Abdullah Ghazali)
Shannon Hayes (Nicole Lawson)
Anders Hayward (Colin Dixon)
Kamal Mustaffai (Mutaz)
Orla Russell (Poppy)
Alastair Mackenzie (Chapman)

UK 2023
Series 2 Episode 1
60 mins

Total running time 110min

Courtesy of BBC/World Productions

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Programme notes and credits compiled by Sight and Sound and the BFI Documentation Unit
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