The story of Britain’s Olympic-winning ice-dancing pair Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean will be told in a TV drama for ITV in the U.K. Will Tudor (“Game of Thrones”) will play Dean and Poppy Lee Friar (“Ackley Bridge”) portrays Torvill in the 120-minute drama, which Endemol Shine will sell internationally.
The film will track the artistic and personal relationship between the two skaters, who were British, European, world and Olympic champions in their discipline. They were national heroes in the U.K., with 24 million viewers at home tuning in to their 1984 Olympics win.
Endemol Shine-backed Darlow Smithson will make the ice-dance drama, which was written by William Ivory (“Made in Dagenham”). The TV movie will also star Anita Dobson (“EastEnders”) as Torvill’s first coach, and Stephen Tompkinson (“The Split”) as her father.
Ivory interviewed his subjects at length and said: “Chris and Jayne are such fascinating characters: sports people and athletes with all the grit and determination that entails, but real artists, too, engaging in deeply felt creative and emotional battles.”
“We have thoroughly enjoyed the time we have spent with William Ivory and the team at Darlow Smithson sharing experiences of our passion for skating, the lifelong friendship that came through our sport and everything that it took to achieve our eventual goal of becoming Olympic champions.”
Dean Andrews (“Last Tango in Halifax”) and Christine Bottomley (“Cucumber”) will play Dean’s parents in the film. Jaime Winstone (“After Hours”) is the ice dancing instructor who pairs Chris and Jayne together for the first time.