Tenet Star Kenneth Branagh To Play Boris Johnson In New Limited Series About COVID-19

The five-part show will focus on Johnson and his administration during the first wave of COVID-19.


Veteran actor Kenneth Branagh's next role has been confirmed, and he's set to portray UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson in a limited series chronicling the leader's response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The show is called This Sceptred Isle, and it's in production at the British studio Sky; there will be five episodes in total. The series will look into the early days of the COVID-19 virus and touch on how Johnson and his administration took on the pandemic.

Michael Winterbottom (24 Hour Party People) is directing the series from a script he co-wrote with Kieron Quirke (Defending the Guilty), according to EW.

Branagh has earned five Academy Award nominations over the years and recently starred in Christopher Nolan's Tenet.

"The first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic will be remembered forever," Winterbottom said in a statement. "A time when the country came together to battle an invisible enemy. A time when people were more aware than ever of the importance of community."

He added: "Our series weaves together countless true stories--from Boris Johnson in Number 10 [Downing Street] to front line workers around the country--chronicling the efforts of scientists, doctors, care home workers and policymakers to protect us from the virus."

There is no word yet on when production will begin on This Sceptred Isle or when the show will premiere. Branagh's next film is the Agatha Christie movie Death on the Nile, which he directed and stars in.

The UK has gone back into lockdown, so this show is as timely as ever. Johnson himself contracted COVID-19 and was hospitalized for a period of time.

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