Starz and BBC are rounding out the cast for limited series Howards End, based on E.M. Forster’s classic novel. Julia Ormond (Temple Grandin, Mad Men) and newcomers Philippa Coulthard (The Catch, Secrets and Lies), Joseph Quinn (Dickensian) have signed on to the four-part series, alongside Rosalind Eleazar (National Treasure, NW) and Alex Lawther (Imitation Game, Black Mirror). They join previously announced Hayley Atwell, Matthew Macfadyen, and Tracey Ullman.
Howards End tells the story of two couples caught in a swirling landscape of social and class divisions in turn-of-the-century England. Playground is executive producing in association with City Entertainment and KippSter Entertainment. Kenneth Lonergan is penning the adaptation, directed by Hettie Macdonald.
It focuses on Margaret Schlegel (Atwell), an intelligent, idealistic, bohemian young woman who is courted by the older Henry Wilcox (Macfadyen), a self-made conservative businessman, after his wife Ruth Wilcox (Ormond) dies unexpectedly. Meanwhile, Margaret’s passionate and capricious younger sister Helen Schlegel (Coulthard) takes up the cause of Leonard Bast (Quinn), a young bank clerk who falls on hard times at work and at home with his partner Jacky (Eleazar). In the absence of their parents, who have died, the sisters’ loving but interfering Aunt Juley (Ullman) tries to keep the young ladies and their brother Tibby (Lawther) on the straight and narrow.
Colin Callender executive produces with City Entertainment’s Joshua D. Maurer (Papillon) and Alixandre Witlin (The Last Tycoon) and KippSter Entertainment’s David A. Stern (The Last Tycoon) as well as with Playground’s Sophie Gardiner (Eureka Street) and Scott Huff (The Missing) and Lucy Richer for the BBC. Laura Hastings-Smith (Hunger) is producing.
The series will film in and around London and air on BBC in the UK and Starz in the U.S.
Coulthard, who also has a supporting role in the upcoming Annabelle 2, is repped by Stagecoach Entertainment and Joseph Le Talent Agency in the U.S. and the Markham Agency in the UK.