What happens when a dark scandal of the political elite comes to light? That’s the premise of Anatomy of a Scandal a new political thriller series available on Netflix from today, Friday, April 15.
This small screen adaptation of Sarah Vaughan’s best-selling book details the shady inner lives of Britain’s Westminster political elite as they try to repair their shattered image. This six-episode show, coming from Big Little Lies creator David E. Kelley and Melissa James Gibson, is “part courtroom drama and part psychological thriller.”
Each season of the show will center around a new scandal, with Season One following parliamentary minister James Whitehouse as he is accused of a heinous crime. Trying to deal with the chaotic aftermath of her husband’s awful misdeeds being thrust into the limelight is his wife Sophie Whitehouse, who’s played by actress Sienna Miller.
Readmore:Anatomy of a Scandal Netflix release date and what is the new drama series about?
Here’s everything you need to know about the cast as we settle in for the show’s debut.
Sienna Miller as Sophie Whitehouse
Sienna Miller’s breakthrough role came in 2004, when she appeared in the British crime film Layer Cake as Tammy and comedy-drama Alfie. She’s also portrayed the famous actress Tippi Hedren in The Girl and since gone on to appear in GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra, American Sniper and The Lost City of Z.
Now Miller is transforming into Sophie Whitehouse, an Oxford graduate who married the junior minister John Whitehouse and mothered two children with him.
Her seemingly ideal marriage is rocked by accusations that her husband committed sexual assault. She’s thrown into a whirlwind of public scrutiny, trying to hold her life together.
Rupert Friend plays James Whitehouse
Sophie’s husband James looks charismatic on the surface, but his perfect image is rocked when he is accused of sexually assaulting his aid. As a member of the exclusive ‘Libertine Club, reserved for the inner circle of Eton graduates, James has money and privilege on his side.
Taking this on is Rupert Friend, a well-known actor who has appeared in The Death of Stalin, and The French Dispatch and The Boy in Striped Pajamas. Friend has a history of portraying difficult men. His breakthrough role came in 2005 when he played Mr Wickham in Pride and Prejudice and later tried his hand as royalty as Prince Albert in Young Victoria (2009).
On the small screen, he is most known for playing Peter Quinn in US spy thriller Homeland.
Naomi Scott plays Olivia Lytton
Olivia is a young, ambitious aid whose life is turned upside down when she begins an affair with Whitehouse. After he assaults her, she decides to tell her story from her, and soon learns first hand from her the consequences of her truth and the trauma of testifying.
Portraying the incredible difficulty of being a sexual assault victim in the public eye is Naomi Scott, a Disney breakout star who played Princess Jasmine in the live-action remake of Aladdin in 2019, which saw Will Smith as the Genie. That same year, she played one of Charlie’s Angels’ alongside Kristen Stewart.
She’s also appearing in Distant, a sci-fi drama out later this year, and is filming for the TV series Modern Love Tokyo and Aladdin 2, expected to be released in 2025.
Michelle Dockery plays Kate Woodcroft
Taking on John’s case is Kate Woodcroft, the steely criminal barrister who specializes in sexual assault crimes. Kate has her eyes on justice above all, refusing to be shaken by the high profile nature of the case.
She’s being played by Michelle Dockery, who is most well-known for playing Lady Mary Crawley in Downton Abbey. She spent five years as Crawley, and is beginning her back for the upcoming film Downton Abbey: A New Era .
She’s also been in Guy Ritchie’s crime comedy The Gentleman, American drama titles Defending Jacob, Good Behavior and Godless, and has just wrapped filming on the dystopian action film Boy Kills World.
Josette Simon plays Angela Regan
Kate Woodcroft is up against Angela Regan, a defense barrister hell bent on getting James Whitehouse off the hook, regardless of what the truth is. Regan is played by Josette Simon, an actress known for Wonder Woman (2017), Pokémon Detective Pikachu (2019) and Red Lights (2012). She also played Zelda in the 2020 movie The Witches and Lindsey in the TV Series The Girlfriend Experience.
Simon is keeping busy this year, shooting for the short film Wagwan and TV Mini Series Crossfire.
Who is in the rest of the cast?
Completing the cast is Joshua McGuire (Cheaters) as the shady Downing Street communications chief who is only out to protect himself and Geoffrey Streatfeild (The Thick of It, The Lady in the Van) as Prime Minister of Tom Southern, who is steadfast in his public support for his friend James.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.