Kylie Minogue, Idris Elba, Suranne Jones, Anna Friel for new series of Sky Arts Playhouse Presents
Pop Princess Kylie will renew her focus on acting in "quirky" drama written and directed by Marc Warren
Kylie Minogue leads a long list of stars who will appear in the new series of Playhouse Presents, a strand of one-off dramas that returns to Sky Arts 1 in March.
Minogue will play the lead in Hey Diddly Dee, a dark comedy drama written and directed by Hustle and Mad Dogs star Marc Warren about the death of a theatre actor. "When the script was sent to me, I read it and knew instinctively I wanted to be part of this project,” Minogue said. “Marc has created a beautiful and quirky story."
Co-starring with Minogue are Homeland's David Harewood, former Gavin & Stacey star Mathew Horne, and Paul Kaye – as well as Peter Serafinowicz, pictured above in character as Roger, an actor taking the role of Andy Warhol. Minogue is Bibi, an actress playing one of Warhol's muses, Edie Sedgwick.
Minogue, who first found fame as an actress in Australian soap Neighbours before launching a pop career in 1987, was this week reported to have parted company with her long-term manager and decided to suspend her recording work in favour of acting.
This will be only her second acting role in a British TV show, following her appearance opposite David Tennant in the 2007 Doctor Who Christmas special, Voyage of the Damned.
Among her other notable acting jobs is her role in Holy Motors, the 2012 film directed by French maverick Leos Carax. It was one of the most critically acclaimed movies of last year.
Joining Marc Warren in making his writing/directing debut for the series will be Luther star Idris Elba. His episode, the intriguing-sounding, "taut and sexy" Pavement Psychologist, features Anna Friel as a "woman in search of satisfaction in the world of accounting", whose life is transformed when she meets a homeless man (Nonso Anozie). Co-starring are Reggie Yates and Steven Mackintosh.
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"This was a tremendous opportunity that allowed me to showcase creativity that I don't always have a chance to share with the public," Elba said.
Other episodes in the series include:
Mr Understood, a comic drama about a transvestite co-created by Grayson Perry;
Stage Door Johnnies, a comedy about obsessive theatre-goers starring Suranne Jones, Elizabeth Berrington, Alex Macqueen and Johnny Sweet;
Union Square, which is written and directed by Vanessa Redgrave's son Carlo Nero and stars Redgrave, Stephen Graham and Samantha Bond;
Snodgrass, a fantasy comedy scripted by TV Burp writer David Quantick, which stars Ian Hart as a 50-year-old, unemployed John Lennon who left the Beatles in 1962 (Downton Abbey's Kevin Doyle co-stars);
Ragged, directed and co-written by Johnny Vegas, starring Ricky Tomlinson in a drama based on his own life in the 1970s; and
Cargese, a "unique piece of poetic realism which mines the tragic seam of adolescent love and loss" that stars Craig Roberts, Joe Cole and Avigail Tlalim and is directed by a certain Matt Smith…