The Stars Have Come a Long Way Since the BBC

It was a series that captured – and indeed even stole – the hearts of millions around the world. Some three decades after the first Poldark series had a similar effect, a new version hit our screens seven years ago.

The stories based on the books of Winston Graham and set in Cornwall’s rich mining era in the late 18th century focused on the lives and loves, trials and tribulations of mine captain and American Revolutionary War veteran Ross Poldark, played by a then lesser-known heartthrob Aidan Turner. A main theme for fans was, of course, his romance with Demelza, played by Eleanor Tomlinson.

But since coming to an emotional end in 2019 the cast have remained fixtures on our screens, going on to some pretty noteworthy roles. From Amazon shows to blockbuster movies, the stars have come a long way since the BBC drama first aired.

Here’s what the Poldark cast have been up to:

Aidan Turner

Leading man Aidan Turner, 38, shot to fame playing Ross Poldark – especially thanks to THAT shirtless scything photo – but has since cemented his acting career and star status in several high-profile roles.

In his latest role, Turner stars in cult BBC comedy Toast of Tinseltown alongside lead Matt Berry. But it doesn’t stop there for Turner fans as he’s set to front ITV’s gripping new psychological thriller series, The Suspect, later this year. The five-part drama is produced by the Line of Duty, Vigil and The Pembrokeshire Murders producers.

Turner will play Doctor Joe O’Loughlin, a successful clinical psychologist whose seemingly perfect life comes into question after the death of a young woman. He said in a statement: “I am thrilled to be taking on the complex and demanding role of Joseph O’Loughlin, a man with so much to give but so much to lose, and a hidden darker side.”

The Irish actor will also return to the screens next month, playing Leonardo da Vinci in a new series, Leonardo, coming to Amazon Prime about the Renaissance polymath’s life.

Already airing in Italy, the series reportedly plays hard and fast with the truth, inventing a new muse and a murder accusation against the Italian genius.

Also starring Turner, currently in post-production is movie The way of the Wind, while filming is underway for TV series The Suspects.

His other most recent credits include The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then The Bigfoot in 2018, Love is Blind (2019), Loving Vincent, about van Gogh and reuniting him with Tomlinson in 2017. Of course pre-Poldark he shot to fame to a lesser degree in The Hobbit blockbuster films in 2012 to 2014.

Eleanor Tomlinson

Recently Eleanor Tomlinson, 29, starred in a Netflix romantic comedy, Love Wedding Repeat, alongside Sam Clafflin. But the movie also features a Poldark reunion of sorts. That’s because the bride, Hayley, and her desperate ex, Marc, are played by Tomlinson and Jack Farthing, two actors who also played the heroine, Demelza Poldark, and villain, Ross’ jealous arch-rival George Warleggan, in Poldark.

In other works, Tomlinson also starred alongside the likes of American legend Christopher Walken, Stephen Merchant and Rhianne Barreto in last year’s BBC and Amazon Studios series The Outlaws, written and directed by Merchant, Ricky Gervais’ co-writer of The Office. Tomlinson was almost unrecognisable in a role as a air-headed social media influencer, a million miles from a Cornish maid of the late 1700s.

While last year also saw her in TV seriess The Nevers, and Intergalactic – which followed 2018’s Ordeal by Innocence and 2019’s The War of the Worlds on the small screen – other film credits include Colette (2018) and Van Gogh tale Loving Vincent (2017).

Jack Farthing

Princess Diana drama, Spencer, found its Prince Charles in Poldark actor Jack Farthing. The 36-year-old performer filmed the project opposite Kristen Stewart who played Dianna in the film.

He also appears in Chloe, a new BBC drama where he plays lead character Chloe’s brooding friend Richard. The full series is available to watch on iPlayer now.

Aside from Love Wedding Repeat mentioned above, from 2020, he was also on the meandering and tense 2021 drama The Lost Daughter, alongside Olivia Colman, and Official Secrets in 2019.

Luke Norris

Another Netflix credit, Luke Norris, 36 – who played Dr Dwight Enys, Ross’s longtime friend from the Army – stars in thriller The Weekend Away, based on the best-selling novel of the same name by Sarah Alderson. He stars alongside Gossip Girl’s Leighton Meester, playing her husband in the twisty ‘who dunnit’ movie.

Heida Reed

Icelandic actress Heida Reed, 33, starred as Elizabeth Warleggan in Poldark – Ross’ childhood sweetheart.

Now working with Emmy-awarding winning producer Dick Wolf, Reed is currently portraying FBI Special Agent Jamie Kellett in CBS crime drama series FBI: International.

Movie Summerlight… and Then Comes the Night is in post-production.

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