James Norton to star in Russian mob drama McMafia

The War And Peace star has landed a role in a new BBC drama.

Press Association
Last updated:04 August 2016 - 04.13pm

James Norton has been cast in a new BBC drama about the Russian mafia based in London.

The actor is best known for his roles in ITV series Grantchester as well as the BBC’s Happy Valley and period drama War And Peace.

The Bafta-nominated 31-year-old will take on the leading role in the new programme inspired by Misha Glenny’s best-selling 2008 book McMafia, which delved into the global reach of organised crime.

James Norton attending the House of Fraser Bafta TV Awards 2016
James Norton attending the House of Fraser Bafta TV Awards 2016 (Ian West)

He will play Alex Godman, the English-raised son of Russian exiles with previous links to organised criminals.

The eight-part drama is to focus on Alex as he is drawn into the criminal underbelly he has avoided his entire life, and his international journey through the mafia’s world.

Director of BBC Content Charlotte Moore said that James is “at the top of his game” and will “do justice” to the character and the series.

A BBC statement said: “This fast-paced thriller is epic and intimate, glamorous and gritty, global in scale and forensic in detail.”

James Norton, Lily James and Paul Dano in the BBC's War & Peace
James Norton, Lily James and Paul Dano in the BBC’s War And Peace (Mitch Jenkins/BBC)

James Watkins, who directed 2012 movie The Woman In Black, joined forces with Oscar-nominated screenwriter Hossein Amini to create the TV series.

They have led the writing team, which includes The Night Manager writer David Farr, Doctor Who writer Peter Harness and Me Without You’s Laurence Coriat.

In July it was announced that James will star in a new episode of Black Mirror alongside Jurassic world actress Bryce Dallas Howard when the series returns on Netflix later this year.

Walking Dead: Buy now on BT TV Store

Please note: Comments must be on topic and relevant to the article or subject. Comments aren't added to the site automatically between 2am and 6am. Please read our House Rules and Community Guidelines