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Dark Heart ITV: everything you need to know about the new crime drama starring Tom Riley

The six-part drama is penned by Unforgotten writer Chris Lang

Dark Heart

Starring Tom Riley as DI Will Wagstaffe, ITV's new crime drama Dark Heart explores some seriously gruesome murders.


If it seems familiar, that's because the first couple of episodes originally aired back in 2016 as a feature-length pilot on ITV Encore. That channel is now defunct, but writer Chris Lang and his team got the go-ahead for a full series on the main ITV channel – and Wagstaffe is back for more.

Here's everything we know about the new series of Dark Heart:

When is Dark Heart on TV?

Dark Heart

The six-part series premiered on Wednesday 31st October at 9pm on ITV, with episode two the following night on Thursday 1st November at 9pm on ITV. The series will continue to air on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 9pm.

What is Dark Heart about?

Dark Heart

The series revolves around DI Will Wagstaffe, who is haunted by the murder of his parents when he was a teenager. The series will see him trying to solve brutal crimes while also attempting to hold his fractured life together.

His history continues to impact both his work and his personal life, affecting his on-off relationship with girlfriend Sylvie. His sister Juliette (Charlotte Riley) and her son Harry are the closest people in his life: Harry sees Wagstaffe (known as Staffe to his colleagues) as a father figure – a role he might not be suited for.

Dark Heart is inspired by characters from a series of novels by Adam Creed.

Is there a trailer for Dark Heart?

Yes: ITV revealed the suitably murky trailer for Dark Heart on 10th October, all to the tune of Frank Sinatra's My Way...

Who will star in Dark Heart?

Tom Riley plays the lead role of Will Wagstaffe, with Charlotte Riley playing his sister Juliette. Miranda Raison stars as Staffe's on-and-off-again girlfriend.

The series will also feature Anjli Mahindra and guest appearances from Claire Goose, Alex Carter, Clare Foster and Paul Kaye.

Where is Dark Heart filmed?

Dark Heart in London

The drama was filmed in London, primarily in East London - although there were also locations in West London and in Ilford.

Describing the "guerrilla style" shooting, Tom Riley told us on set: "It's very hard to shoot in central London. You can't put trailers anywhere, you can't put sound trucks or lighting trucks, and there's nowhere to change.

"So we've been doing a lot of: cameras on the streets of Soho, getting changed in pub bathrooms, renting a hotel room that's nearby to run out and do it again. So we can really get the side of London that you don't see on TV very much because it's too hard to do it.


"And after six weeks of it you begin to lose your mind, after being out in Soho at 11 pm with people just walking into shot and going, 'What you filming?'... London really features heavily in a way that has been hard to shoot, but I think is going to really pay off on the screen."

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