29 December 2019
Series 1 Episode 1 of 6
London, winter 1962. Britain is gripped by the Cuban Missile Crisis, and a series of sex and spy scandals have rocked the British government. Short of money, working-class model Christine Keeler has returned to stage-dancing in Soho’s famous cabaret clubs. Christine lives with her West Indian boyfriend Johnny in a racially tense Notting Hill, and confides in her best friend Mandy Rice-Davies.
It has been over a year since Christine’s secret affair with the married, middle-aged Conservative minister of war, John Profumo. But now Christine is shaken by violent harassment by a West Indian stalker, ‘Lucky’ Gordon, and when Johnny fails to protect her, she considers refuge with her mentor, socialite Dr Stephen Ward. However, Ward is under MI5 surveillance for entertaining a handsome Russian diplomat, and amid delusions of grandeur, he tries to use his establishment links to secure emergency nuclear talks between the US and Russia.
At the same time, Profumo tries to raise his profile to mark the end of UK conscription, and Christine recalls the beginnings of their infamous affair: the fateful weekend they met at twilight by a country manor swimming pool.
The Trial of Christine Keeler is an upcoming British television series based on the chain of events surrounding the Profumo affair in the 1960s. It was ordered to series in October 2017. The series will be adapted by screenwriter Amanda Coe and will star Sophie Cookson, James Norton, Ellie Bamber, Ben Miles, Visar Vishka, Emilia Fox, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett and Anthony Welsh. Keshet International will handle the distribution rights internationally whilst Endeavor Content will hand the distribution rights in the US. The series is due to be broadcast on BBC One, in the United Kingdom from 29 December 2019.
Sophie Cookson as Christine Keeler, a model and a showgirl who becomes entangled in a scandal at age 21, after a series of events involving her two ex-boyfriends Johnny Edgecombe and Lucky Gordon, in combination with MI5's secret service intrigues, combine to publicly reveal two of Keeler's affairs from two years before when she was 19. The two concerned Keeler affairs were both with married men, with Soviet Union naval attaché Yevgeny Ivanov, and with Secretary of State for War, John Profumo, at the height of the Cold War.
James Norton as Stephen Ward, an osteopath who introduces John Profumo to Christine Keeler.
Ellie Bamber as Mandy Rice-Davies, A model, a showgirl and friend of Christine Keeler.
Ben Miles as John Profumo, a Conservative MP and Secretary of State for War who is plunged into a scandal after his affair with Christine Keeler is exposed.
Emilia Fox as Valerie Hobson Profumo, the actress wife of John Profumo.
Nathan Stewart-Jarrett as Johnny Edgecombe, a jazz promoter whose involvement with Christine Keeler inadvertently alerted authorities to the Profumo affair.
Anthony Welsh as Lucky Gordon, a jazz singer who comes to public attention due to his involvement with Christine Keeler.