New Cilla drama coming to screens

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Cilla Black © ITV

Cilla Black © ITV

A new three-part drama portraying the life of Liverpool entertainer Cilla Black is coming to ITV.

The show, written by acclaimed writer Jeff Pope, will feature the Liverpudlian star and her struggle to the top, as well as her relationship with husband Bobby Willis, who eventually became her manager.

Having first tasted success 50 years ago as part of the Brian Epstein stable of talent which included The Beatles, audiences are expected to see how the Blind Date presenter’s friendship with the band helped to shape her career as a music icon.

Actress Sheridan Smith will be playing the leading role, having risen to prominence with her work on shows such as ‘Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps’, ‘Gavin and Stacey’ and ‘Benidorm.’

She said: “I am thrilled to be playing Cilla, as she is a British icon. In the 60s, as a young girl from Liverpool, she had numerous number ones and sang with The Beatles, her life story is fascinating.

“I’m so thrilled to be back at ITV for such an exciting project and to hopefully show a younger audience what a star Cilla has always been, and for the older generation they can re-live those swinging 60s. What an era. I can’t wait to get up to Liverpool (my favourite city) and start filming. I’m really honoured and just hope I do her story justice.”

ITV’s Director of Drama Steve November said: “Jeff’s scripts offer an extraordinary insight into Cilla’s humble beginnings and meteoric rise to chart success. He captures Liverpool life back in the 60s through her eyes and it’s fascinating thinking of her hanging out backstage at the Cavern Club with The Beatles.”

Filming will continue in Liverpool throughout the next two months.

About Alisha Daya, JMU Journalism