Suranne Jones and Michael Palin join cast of ITV’s period drama Vanity Fair

Doctor Foster star to play Miss Pinkerton in the lavish ITV and Amazon production of the classic Victorian novel

Suranne Jones as Doctor Foster

Doctor Foster star Suranne Jones is swapping a stethoscope for a Victorian bonnet with a new role in ITV’s drama adaptation of Vanity Fair.

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She will play the snobbish, name-dropping society lady Miss Pinkerton in a sweeping adaptation of William Makepeace Thackeray’s epic story of love and intrigue during the Napoleonic Wars.

Michael Palin, the legendary comedian and travel presenter, will play the part of Thackeray narrating the action which is taken from the author’s 1848 classic.

RadioTimes.com revealed last week that Doc Martin star Martin Clunes will appear in the show  – we now know he’ll be playing the villainous aristocrat Sir Pitt Crawley.

It has been revealed that Oldham-born actress Olivia Cooke – star of Steven Spielberg’s forthcoming film Ready Player One – will take on the lead role of the scheming Becky Sharp in the drama which is being made for ITV and Amazon.

It has also been previously announced that Tom Bateman (Murder On The Orient Express) will play the role of the empty-headed cavalry officer Captain Rawdon Crawley (pictured below with Cooke) and Charlie Rowe (Salvation) is taking on the part of the luckless soldier George Osborne.

Vanity Fair main pic

But today it was also revealed that Johnny Flynn, star of Channel 4’s sitcom Scrotal Recall, will play the genial Dobbin.

Also joining the action are Claudia Jessie (Line of Duty) who plays Becky’s confidante Amelia Sedley, with Simon Russell Beale and Claire Skinner (Outnumbered) as her parents, and David Fynn (School of Rock) as her brother Joss. Frances de La Tour (The History Boys) will play Miss Matilda Crawley.

Filming has started this week in Budapest, with the shooting then continuing in locations in and around London.

Gwyneth Hughes’ adaptation of Thackeray’s literary classic is set against the backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars, and follows Becky as she attempts to escape poverty and ascend the heights of English Society using her considerable charm and beauty.

The anti-heroine’s antics her all the way to the court of King George IV, via the Battle of Waterloo.

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Damien Timmer, managing director of producers Mammoth Screen, said: “Vanity Fair is a massive rollercoaster of a story and we’ve assembled an ensemble cast of real range to do it justice, from fast rising stars like Johnny Flynn and Tom Bateman to stage legends like Simon Russell Beale and household names like Suranne Jones and Martin Clunes, all orbiting Olivia Cooke’s irresistible Becky as she conquers the 21st century. We hope Thackeray would approve –and with Michael Palin playing him, why wouldn’t he?!”