Ben Whishaw to play Hugh Grant’s ex-lover in A Very English Scandal

The BAFTA-winning Bond star joins Russell T Davies's three-part real-life drama

Ben Whishaw Getty

Ben Whishaw has joined Russell T Davies’ major three-part drama A Very English Scandal, in the role of Norman Scott.


Whishaw will play the ex-lover of Hugh Grant’s disgraced MP Jeremy Thorpe, who was tried and acquitted of conspiring to murder Scott in 1979. He was the first British politician ever to stand trial on such a charge.

A Very English Scandal is based on the bestselling book of the same name. Written by John Preston, author and former Arts Editor of the Evening Standard and Sunday Telegraph, it recounts the real-life tale of “breath-taking deceit and corruption that, at the time, hardly anyone dared believe it could be true.”

Davies is writing the three-part TV adaptation, which will be directed by BAFTA winner Stephen Frears.

“It’s a dream come true, to work with Ben. One of Britain’s finest actors playing one of history’s most fascinating men”, T Davies said.


“Ben Whishaw is an extraordinary actor and we are thrilled to announce he will star opposite Hugh Grant in this scandalous real-life story for BBC One. I cannot wait to see this first-class British duo bring Russell’s powerful scripts to life”, Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama, added.