CHANNEL 4 AND HBO CO-PRODUCTION ‘GET MILLIE BLACK’ CASTS TAMARA LAWRANCE IN TITLE ROLE, TANYA HAMILTON TO DIRECTCategory: News Release
The Channel 4 and HBO co-production of Get Millie Black has cast Tamara Lawrance to star in the title role, with Tanya Hamilton to direct.
Get Millie Black, produced by Motive Pictures, is a vivid, unflinching, and gripping six-part crime noir, follows the inimitable Millie-Jean Black, a police detective forced to quit Scotland Yard and return home to Jamaica, where she is soon pursuing a missing persons case that threatens to expose more than she may be willing to confront.
The series, which also stars Joe Dempsie, Gershwyn Eustache Jnr and Chyna McQueen, marks the screenwriting debut of Booker Prizewinning author Marlon James. Production began this week in Jamaica, with additional shooting in London to come.
Marlon James’ Get Millie Black is a true original; a vivid, blistering slice of contemporary noir driven by a truly iconic woman, the formidable Millie-Jean Black. Returning to her roots from her troubled life in London, to work missing persons cases for the Jamaican police force, Millie soon picks up the trail of an investigation that begins in the steaming streets of downtown Kingston and works its way up to the hill plantations of the post-colonial elite. Events eventually explode onto the international stage, propelling Millie back to the UK, where pretty soon everyone is out to get Millie Black.
Marlon James has created a deeply personal and wholly authentic version of a Jamaica never seen on screen before. Get Millie Black explores the troubled legacy of racism, slavery, sexuality, classism and cycles of trauma in the post-colonial landscape of Britain and Jamaica, always told through the unique perspective of Millie – a girl born on the Rock, raised in London, who claims to be both British and Jamaican, yet somehow belongs to neither place. It is a story peopled by a host of unforgettable characters; transgender ‘gully queen’ Hibiscus, the sibling Millie left behind; her brilliant partner on the Jamaican police force, Curtis, who is forced to keep his love life secret from his colleagues; game-playing Scotland Yard Inspector Luke Holborn; and Hit Girl, go-go-club owner and underworld entrepreneur.
Get Millie Black is a gripping international mystery and a compelling manhunt told in six parts through the eyes of six people, each with their own bias and beef, all of whom believe they know the true Millie Black, perhaps the deepest mystery of all.
Marlon James, Creator and Executive Producer, said: “This is the first major international TV show to put my home country, Jamaica, centre stage, so it’s beyond awesome to have actual world-class Jamaican talent both in front and behind the camera, with our star Tamara Lawrance and Director Tanya Hamilton.”
Simon Maxwell, CEO, Motive Pictures and Executive Producer, commented: “We are immensely proud to announce such a stellar line-up of talent on Get Millie Black – from directors Tanya Hamilton and Annetta Laufer, to writers Theresa Ikoko, Lydia Adetunji and Joshua St Johnston, to a cast that showcases some of the most exciting acting talents from Jamaica and the UK, led by Tamara Lawrance, Joe Dempsie, Gershwyn Eustache Jnr and a debut performance destined to electrify audiences from rising Kingston star, Chyna McQueen.”
A BAFTA’s ‘Breakthrough Talent 2020’, Tamara Lawrance’s film “Silent Twins,” in which she stars and executive produces, debuts in Un Certain Regard at Cannes this year. Her award-winning performance in “The Long Song” for Heyday Film earned her the lead in the independent feature “Kindred,” for which she was nominated for Best Actress at BAFTA Scotland. Tamara is also known for several award-winning plays in London including leading roles at the National and Royal Court Theatre.
Tanya Hamilton, a Sundance Institute writing and directing fellow is the writer/director of the award-winning film “Night Catches Us.” Hamilton was also the pilot director and executive producer of the series “Cherish the Day.” Among her other small screen directing credits are multiple episodes of HBO's “Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty,” Showtime's “The Chi” and Epix's “Berlin Station” and “The Godfather of Harlem.”
- Tamara Lawrance as Millie-Jean Black, a police detective forced to quit Scotland Yard and return to the country of her birth, Jamaica, to work missing persons cases for the JPF (Jamaican Police Force), Millie is a woman caught between worlds and conflicting versions of herself. Lawrance is represented by Gordon and French and UTA.
- Joe Dempsie (Pieces of Her, Adult Material) as Luke Holborn, a British detective who shows up in Kingston on the trail of a major investigation that’s set on a collision course with Millie’s. Bringing all the baggage of Scotland Yard with him, Holborn’s presence on Millie’s home turf is destined to be triggering in all sorts of ways. Dempsie is represented by B-Side Management in the UK and UTA and Atlas Artists in the US.
- Gershwyn Eustache Jnr as Curtis, as a gay cop, Curtis can go only so far in his own police force; as Millie Black’s partner, he’s about to have his whole life shattered. Eustache is represented by ARG.
- Chyna McQueen as Hibiscus, Millie’s sister and one of the Sunlight Ladies, a band of Queer outcasts living hand-to-mouth yet exuberantly in the gullies that run throughout Kingston. Hibiscus is the sister Millie never bargained for. Millie is the sister Hibiscus never knew she needed. McQueen is represented by RAW Management.
An HBO and Channel 4 co-production; Creator/Executive Producer, Marlon James (represented by The Trident Media Group and Anonymous Content); Lead Director/ Co-Executive Producer, Tanya Hamilton (represented by Michael Lewis and Associates); Executive Producer, Simon Maxwell (CEO Motive Pictures, and Executive Producer); Director (2 episodes), Annetta Laufer (represented by 42 Management); Executive Producer, Leopoldo Gout; Writer/Co-Executive Producer, Joshua St. Johnston (represented by LARK Management); Writer, Theresa Ikoko (represented by Independent Talent Group); Writer, Lydia Adetunji (represented by The Agency); Story Producer, Pia Furtado (Motive Pictures). Get Millie Black was commissioned by Caroline Hollick, Head of Drama at Channel 4 and Francesca Orsi at HBO.