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The Summer of '65

Date posted: 17.08.2011

Starring the top of the crop of young British talent including Claire Foy (Little Dorrit) and Sam Claflin (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides), White Heat is an ambitious new drama series currently in production in the capital for BBC Two.

The series, which is a semi-autobiographical tale from award-winning writer Paula Milne (Endgame), charts the lives of seven friends over half a century, from their student days back in 1965 through to the present day.

White Heat focuses on the relationships between these very different characters, bonds which prove to be complex, volatile, life-affirming and, on occasions, life-changing. Rebel with a cause Jack (Claflin), intelligent feminist Charlotte (Foy), fragile beauty Lilly (MyAnna Buring), medical student Jay (Reece Ritchie), electronics enthusiast Alan (Lee Ingleby), law student Victor (David Gyasi) and big-hearted Orla (Jessica Gunning) come together as an eclectic group of university students and flatmates living in north London's Tufnell Park.

About the cast, writer and executive producer Paula Milne says: "Getting the right cast for White Heat was crucial not least because it spans half a century. It means our young cast must age from 18 to early forties when the older cast take over. Our young cast are all riding the crest of their own burgeoning, brilliant careers - like the characters are when we first meet them. It takes more than talent to take us on their epic journey through the decades - it takes insight and extraordinary maturity and they have that too. They all say they are lucky to play such parts. Me, I think we are lucky to have them."

The series follows them over four decades as their lives, loves and destinies are shaped by the political events of each era - from the death of Churchill, the union strife of the 1970s, the rise of Thatcher and the Falklands, the advent of Aids or the end of the Cold War to the challenges of the new millennium. Their interwoven personal lives, played against the backdrop of these crucial events, converge to make them the people they are today.

The shoot, which is planned to finish next month, has been taking place in and around London, on location in Wapping, as well as Hertfordshire. The exterior of the house was filmed in Tulse Hill, Lambeth, whilst the interiors are being shot in studio.

White Heat is directed by John Alexander (Small Island), produced by Elinor Day and exec produced by ITV Studios for BBC Two. The series is planned to air in 2012.

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