ITV thriller Happy Valley supporters are already concerned about Sophie Rundle’s character’s destiny, despite the fact that After the Flood has yet to air.
In Sally Wainwright’s famous BBC drama, the Gentleman Jack actress’ police officer met a horrible death when maniac Tommy Lee Royce (James Norton) reversed over her twice.
Sophie, 35, is back as a tenacious investigator in her current part, and the parallels between the two roles have worried her admirers, who worry another horrible murder is on the way.
Speaking ahead of After the Flood’s release, the Peaky Blinders star joked: ‘When they released the poster for After the Flood fans were like I havetrauma from seeing you in a police jacket.’
The six-part series, which also stars Phillip Glenister and Lorraine Ashbourne, is touted as a ‘climate change’ mystery and follows Sophie’s PC Joanna Marshall as she investigates the inexplicable emergence of a dead corpse following a disastrous flood.
Fans of Happy Valley may want to turn away now since this revelation will do nothing to calm their anxieties, but the action-packed season left Sophie bruised. She didn’t mind.
‘I was bruised by the end of it and I was really pleased with my bruises; I showed everybody,’ she laughed.
‘On the last day of filming, my legs were covered in bruises. It was the literal manifestation of being a bit beaten up by the end of the shoot.’
However, the journey was worthwhile. Sophie, whose acting resume reads like British TV’s biggest blockbusters, from Gentleman Jack to Peaky Blinders, called the show as her ‘coolest’ production.
‘It was just unlike anything I’ve been in before,’ she added.
Unlike certain crime programmes, which must remain nameless, After the Flood centres on a female investigator and a male corpse.
Sophie agreed that it is a ‘relief’ to ‘not open on a sexy dead woman’, speaking forall of us when she said: ‘We’re all bored of that.’
Another notable distinction from most police dramas is Sophie’s character, Joanna, who is pregnant throughout the series.
‘I’ve played a lot of pregnant women, ‘ Sophie explained. ‘And then it gets swept under the rug but Jo’s pregnancy is seminal to who she is.
‘It’s interesting to see the visual of a woman, with a long blonde ponytail pregnant, doing these slightly mad things and coming up against people’s perceptions of how she should be behaving and what she can do.’
Sophie’s first significant starring role, despite her long history on British television, comes in After the Flood. Fortunately, she has national treasure and Gentleman Jack co-star Suranne Jones to turn to for assistance.
She said: ‘I’m very good pals with Suranne still. I’m always like, “What should I do? Tell me.” But you learn a lot by watching people.
‘I have mad respect for Suranne, particularly the stamina that is required to lead a show and she has the most incredible work ethic.
‘I really saw how hard she works and how good she is at leading shows and all the other stuff that comes with that, like leading a team of people.’
We have seen advance episodes of After the Flood and it’s clear Sophie doesn’t need any advice: she’s captivating as Joanna.
Do they share any similarities? ‘I don’t think I would do anything she does as she does something quite controversial.
She laughed: ‘I’m definitely a bit of a Hermoine Granger. It’s against the rules!’
After the Flood premieres on ITV on Wednesday January, 10 at 9pm.
Source My Celebrity Life.