Meet the cast of BBC1’s Hard Sun

Who’s who in the new BBC1 drama centred on a pair of maverick cops dealing with each other…and the end of the world

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 03/01/2018 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: 06/01/2018 - Episode: n/a (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: Second image to use in the TX Countdown
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15037061 as the third image in the sequence Renko (AGYNESS DEYN), Hicks (JIM STURGESS) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Todd Antony

It’s a drama set in a recognisable modern day London… about to be burned to a crisp.

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Yes Hard Sun is back for a second episode on Saturday night (but you can watch int all on iPlayer if you’re impatient).

Neil Cross’s new Saturday night show Hard Sun is a thriller, a cop show and an apocalyptic drama. Our two main characters, oddball pairing Elaine Renko and Robert Hicks (played by Jim Sturgess and Agyness Deyn), will soon discover that the world is about to end. And the powers-that-be want to keep it a secret.

The duo don’t start off as particular friends – Renko is investigating Hicks in an ongoing corruption case and he is on to her. But when the sun is about to devastate the world they need to act together.

Before all that imminent desctruction happens, though, it’s probably a good idea to meet the main protagonists…


DI Elaine Renko (played by Agyness Deyn)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** Renko (AGYNESS DEYN) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Robert Viglasky

A super-smart cop with absolute moral probity, Elaine is never going to take a bribe or bump someone off. But she has a lot on her plate, having been savagely attacked in early scenes in episode one at the hands of her troubled son Daniel. The attack also saw all her belongings destroyed in a fire – a rather neat pointer to what may happen to the world in five years’ time.

Who is Agyness Deyn?

A model and actress, she has adorned many a glossy magazine cover alongside her acting work which includes the role of Aphrodite in 2010 film Clash of the Titans, the lead in 2014 film Electricity and a role in Matt Smith’s 2015 zombie thriller Patient Zero (which is still yet to be released).


DCI Charlie Hicks (played by Jim Sturgess)

Hard Sun Jim Stugess, BBC publicity still, BD

Charming, happy and balanced, he is – on the face of it – a contented family man with a beautiful wife, a lovely kid and a new baby on the way. He’s also a well-regarded, committed copper with just one problem: he’s profoundly dodgy. Not only does he take bribes, he might be embroiled in the murder of a fellow officer, who happened to be his best friend and whose wife he is more than a little close to. Mmm….

Who is Jim Sturgess?

Jim Sturgess starred opposite Anne Hathaway in the film of David Nicholls’ romantic saga One Day and played the lead role of a British intelligence operative Callum Ferguson in Stephen Poliakoff’s so-so BBC drama Close to the Enemy. He’s also had roles in Cloud Atlas, The Way Back and Crossing Over.


Grace Morrigan (played by Nikki Amuka-Bird)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** Grace Morrigan (NIKKI AMUKA-BIRD) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Todd Antony

Formidably calculating, intelligent and dedicated, this shadowy intelligence operative is determined to retrieve the Hard Sun file and will kill to get her way. When Renko outmanoeuvres her by making part of the Hard Sun file public, it becomes personal. Daniel is the pawn that Grace uses to try and manipulate Renko.

Who is Nikki Amuka-Bird?

A veteran of stage and screen she starred in the TV dramas NW and Small Island – and was recently heard in the Doctor Who Christmas special Twice Upon a Time as the voice of the Glass Woman


Daniel Renko (played by Jojo Macari)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** Daniel Renko (JOJO MACARI) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Robert Viglasky

A deeply troubled yoing man from a childhood defined by mental illness, drug abuse and a series of short stays in multiple foster homes. He is also Renko’s son – something which draws him into the far bigger fight she finds herself tackling.

Who is Jojo Macari?

This is the first major TV acting role for the newcomer


Mari Butler (played by Aisling Bea)

Hard Sun Aisling Bea - USE

Mari is the widow of Charlie’s best friend, fellow copper Alex Butler, who has been shot dead before the action starts. She is also having an affair with Charlie – and yet seems to genuinely grieve for her late husband. But she also accepts Charlie’s dodgy money. What’s she up to? Was she involved in Alex’s death?

Who is Aisling Bea?

Best known for her comedy work, the Irish writer and stand-up will be a familiar face to fans of Taskmaster and The Last Leg.


DCS Roland Bell (played by Derek Riddell)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** DCS Roland Bell (DEREK RIDDELL) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Sophie Mutevelian

An arch-enemy of Charlie Hicks, this dry cynical plod is determined to convict his adversary for corruption and the murder of Alex Butler – which is why he is running Renko’s investigation into her dodgy partner.

Who is Derek Riddell?

The Scottish actor is perhaps best known for his portrayal of Dr. Jamie Patterson in the Channel 4 television series No Angels. He has also appeared in an array of shows including Silent Witness and Waterloo Road and more recently showed up in Gunpowder, The Missing and Happy Valley.


DS Keith Greener (played by Owain Arthur)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** DS Keith Greener (OWAIN ARTHUR) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Sophie Mutevelian

A laddish father of six and dedicated family man, Keith’s role as the group’s comedian doesn’t detract from the fact that he is a brilliant copper. One to watch…

Who is Owain Arthur?

The Welsh actor has largely concentrated so far in his career on stage. He rose to fame taking the James Corden role in the hit theatrical show One Man, Two Guvnors. However, he has played Glen Thomas in Casualty and starred as Nobbo in six episodes of Babylon.


DS George Mooney (Adrian Rawlins)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** DS George Mooney (ADRIAN RAWLINS) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Sophie Mutevelian

A gentle, dapper, churchgoing member of the National Trust, Mooney is perhaps the most serious member of Hicks’s team.

Who is Adrian Rawlins?

The veteran actor is perhaps best known for playing Harry Potter’s father James in the hit film adaptations of JK Rowling’s fantasy saga.


DS Herbie Sarafian (Joplin “Chook” Sibtain)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** DS Herbie Sarafian (CHOOK SIBTAIN) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Sophie Mutevelian

Mooney’s best friend is a man as calm and self-assured as he is physically imposing.

Who is Joplin Sibtain?

The English actor is perhaps best known for his role as Mark Grantham in Doctor Who spin-off the Sarah Jane Adventures


DS Mishal Ali (played by Varada Sethu)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** DS Mishal Ali (VARADA SETHU) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Sophie Mutevelian

Another dedicated copper on the team and a fitness fan who smokes the odd ciggie, Mishal is partnered with Keith and they have a close, sibling-like dynamic.

Who is Varada Sethu?

Varada played the fairy Peaseblossom in the BBC’s version of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream last year and appeared in Doctor Foster as Aisha.


Thom Blackwood (played by Richard Coyle)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 16/01/2018 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 3) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 16th JAN 2018*** Thom Blackwood (RICHARD COYLE) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Mark Johnson

Thom is a murderous psychopath who, partly fuelled by the general sense of apocalyptic doom, partly because of his own religious mania, wants to test God. Will the Almighty stop him killing good people? Or will Renko and Hicks?

Who is Richard Coyle?

Rose to fame in 2000 playing the sexually frustrated Jeff in Steven Moffat’s comedy Coupling and has appeared in an array of stage, TV and film roles since then including the NBC drama Crossbones.


Father Dennis Chapman (played by Dermot Crowley)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 16/01/2018 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 3) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 16th JAN 2018*** Father Dennis Chapman (DERMOT CROWLEY) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Hal Shinnie

A goodly, hard-working priest his faith is sorely tested when Thom confesses his crimes to him, putting him on the horns of a terrible dilemma. Can he break the confidentiality of the confessional to save lives? Or must he honour his sacred vows?

Who is Dermot Crowley?

A veteran Irish stage, screen and TV actor he was last seen playing Lazar Kaganovich, one of Josef Stalin’s closest aides in Armando Iannucci’s hit film The Death of Stalin.


Sunny Ramachandran (played by Tom Reed)

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 29/12/2017 - Programme Name: Hard Sun - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ***EMBARGOED UNTIL 29th DEC 2017*** Sunny Ramachandran (TOM REED) - (C) Euston Films - Photographer: Robert Viglasky

Sunny Ramachandran is a dodgy computer hacker who chances upon the Hard Sun data – with deadly consequences for many.

Who is Tom Reed?

The British actor is perhaps best known for his starring role as Ahmad Khan in the police procedural television series NYC 22 as well as appearances in an array of shows including The Good Wife and the NBC TV series Dracula.

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Hard Sun is on BBC1 on Saturday nights starting on Saturday January 6 at 9.35pm