Where Do I Know That Actor?

Great Performances’ presentation of The Hollow Crown concluded this week with a spectacular rendition of Richard III starring Benedict Cumberbatch in the title role. Certainly Cumberbatch is an actor who should be well familiar to all UNC-TV viewers: he stars in Sherlock as the titular detective and he’s been seen in Masterpiece series like The Last Enemy and To The Ends Of The Earth.

But what about the rest of the cast? Oh to be sure – there are many names and faces that stand out as having been in programs broadcast by UNC-TV in the past. Let’s cover a few.

Judi Dench played Cecily, Duchess of York. Like Cumberbatch, she is a veritable household name, especially to public broadcasting viewers. Dame Judi will be primarily known for roles such as Miss Matty in Cranford, Jean in As Time Goes By and Laura in A Fine Romance.

Keeley Hawes, who was Queen Elizabeth in The Hollow Crown, will be best and most recently known as matriarch Louisa Durrell in The Durrells In Corfu on Masterpiece. However, she’s been in other Masterpiece series and was Lady Agnes in Upstairs Downstairs, Cynthia in Wives & Daughters and Lizzie Hexam in Our Mutual Friend. Hawes also played agent Zoe Reynolds on MI-5.

Two other actors left to note, as both have been in quite a few series you may know (although neither is nearly the name of the actors listed above). Ben Daniels, who portrayed the Duke of Buckingham, has been on several Masterpiece presentations: he was Tom Weston in The Paradise, Lord Kildare in The Aristocrats and Francis Walsingham in The Virgin Queen. James Fleet, who was Lord Hastings, was another lord on Indian Summers – Lord Hawthorne. Fleet was also Hugo Horton on The Vicar of Dibley, Mr. Bennett in Death Comes To Pemberley and Frederick Dorrit in Little Dorrit.

The actors I’ve mentioned are just a few of the talented forces behind The Hollow Crown. Of the dozens of actors appearing in Richard III, most have some slight connection to PBS and public broadcasting, whether it’s a guest shot on Doctor Who or as an extra on Downton Abbey. If there’s a face you recognized that I neglected to note, please let me know.

Richard III encores Saturday morning at 2am on UNC-TV.

Got a face you can’t place from one of the plethora of programs UNC-TV airs from the UK? Email me at sparkymac@unctv.org and I’ll try to help out.