'The Crown's' Erin Doherty Joins the Cast of Period Drama 'A Thousand Blows'
The Crown Season 4 truly is the gift that keeps on giving. Not only is this the outing that launched the Netflix drama into the pop cultural stratosphere, but it also gave the series' younger royals time to shine, most notably Josh O'Connor as Prince Charles and Emma Corrin as Princess Diana. But they weren't the only standouts among the royal family: Erin Doherty won raves for her performance as Charles' acerbic younger sister Anne, the Princess Royal. And now she's set to take a major role in another period drama that's loosely based on real people and events, Stephen Knight's A Thousand Blows.
The latest series from the creator of Peaky Blinders, A Thousand Blows is set in the perilous world of illegal boxing in 1880s Victorian London and sounds as though it will boast the same mix of unapologetic violence and period grit that made Knight's story of a Birmingham gang family so addictive.
The story follows the journey of Hezekiah Moskow (Malachi Kirby) and Alec Monroe (Francis Lovehall), two best friends from Jamaica who find themselves drawn into the violent world of East London's underground bare-knuckle boxing scene. Hezekiah's success will lead him into a dangerous rivalry with veteran boxer Sugar Goodson (Stephen Graham) and into the orbit of one Mary Carr, the leader of the notorious all-female London gang known as The Forty Elephants.
Doherty will play Carr, an international thief who was the first "queen" of the notorious group, which had a reputation for its skill in shoplifting and fencing stolen items. (How will Hezekiah's boxing skills further Mary's criminal enterprise? A great question whose answer we'll have to tune in to find out.)
Other new cast members recently announced include several other women who will be part of Carr's gang, including Hannah Walters (Time) as Eliza Moody, Nadia Albina (Doctor Who) as Verity Ross, Morgan Hilaire as Esme Long, Jemma Carlton (Maxine) as Belle Downer, and Caoilfhionn Dunne (Industry) as Anne Glover. Jason Tobin (Warrior) will play an unidentified character known only as Mr. Lao, and James Nelson-Joyce (The Outlaws) takes on the role of Edward "Treacle" Goodson.
“I always love to delve into untold history, and this is a story that really deserves to be told," Knight said in a statement when the series was initially announced. "We are recreating an amazing world and telling a remarkable true story.”
Knight is acting as lead writer on the series in a writers’ room that includes Ameir Brown, Insook Chappell, Harlan Davies, and Yasmin Joseph. Topboy‘s Ashley Walters is the series director alongside Coky Giedroyc. A Thousand Blows is being produced by The Story Collective in a co-production with Matriarch Productions and Water & Power Productions. The U.K. Original series will premiere on Disney+ vertical Star and stream on Hulu in the U.S.
Filming is currently under way in the U.K.