In an exciting new project, acclaimed actor Toby Jones is set to take on the role of solicitor John Bickford in ITV’s upcoming drama, Ruth. The series, based on Carol Ann Lee’s biography, A Fine Day For Hanging: The Real Ruth Ellis Story, delves into the tragic life of Ruth Ellis, the last woman to be hanged in Britain.
Ruth Ellis, portrayed by rising star Lucy Boynton, was a nightclub hostess whose life took a devastating turn when she fatally shot her abusive lover, David Blakely. The infamous hangman Albert Pierrepoint executed her death sentence at Holloway Prison in 1955.
According to Deadline, Jones, a BAFTA-winner, will embody the character of John Bickford, who serves as Ellis’ solicitor. As the series unfolds, Bickford gradually comes to terms with the extent of Ruth’s abuse at the hands of Blakely. He takes on the arduous task of making the case for provocation, and the drama skillfully explores this aspect of their story.
Ruth will employ a unique narrative structure, using parallel timelines. One half of the story will follow Ruth Ellis as she enters the glamorous yet perilous world of upper-class London and faces her inevitable downfall.
Simultaneously, the other half will follow John Bickford as he relentlessly unravels the truth surrounding Ruth’s case.
Silverprint Creative Director Kate Bartlett expressed her enthusiasm for the cast, stating, “We could not have dreamed of a more perfect cast to tell the compelling and complex story of Ruth Ellis.”
Ruth was commissioned by ITV’s Head of Drama Polly Hill and Drama Commissioner Huw Kennair Jones. The series is written by Kelly Jones, with Angie Daniell producing and Lee Haven Jones directing all four episodes. ITV Studios is set to distribute the series.
This gripping drama promises to shed new light on the tragic tale of Ruth Ellis and the efforts of her solicitor, making it a highly anticipated addition to ITV’s lineup.