Jenna Coleman joins new World War 2 drama series ‘The War Rooms’

Victoria star Jenna Coleman will lead the cast of a new drama set during the Second World War.

The 35-year-old English actress is set to play Joan Bright, the woman who ran Winston Churchill’s secret Whitehall bunker.

Coleman will also executive produce the series.

Joan Bright was a former girlfriend of 007 creator Ian Fleming, and it’s believed that she was inspired the famous character of Miss Moneypenny.

The War Rooms is produced David Parfitt, whose most recent movie The Father won two Oscars last month.

Parfitt was previously a producer on Shakespeare in Love, My Week with Marilyn, Red Joan, and The Madness of King George so we’ve got high hopes for this!

Based on Joan Bright’s memoir, The Inner Circle: A View of War at the Top, the series has been written by David Chidlow (Moving On).

Jenna Coleman commented: “Joan Bright was never going to live a conventional life – a young woman who lived her war days under the official secrets act, undercover and underground in the war rooms.

“This story is so compelling not only because of her unique and liberal mind, wryness of spirit and curiosity to live, but because of the opportunity to examine this endlessly fascinating period of time through an intimate and human lens. The closeness and proximity of days and nights lived within this small space, the carriers of the truth amidst the oblivion of propaganda above.

“The beauty and fragility of human connection when living through a time when no one knows what tomorrow will bring. I’m so excited to unearth these hidden lives and at a time where it feels so shockingly relevant right now.”

Jenna Coleman returned to our screens earlier this year in acclaimed true crime drama The Serpent, which is on BBC iPlayer in the UK and on Netflix elsewhere now.

The official synopsis for The War Rooms reads: “The series will follow Bright and her colleagues as events and challenges unfold – creating a sense of the emotions they experience in those moments.

“Each season will cover 12-18 months of the war – from the shock of the war’s outbreak to sustaining the fight to the final push for victory and the battle to shape the modern Britain we know.”

Producers David Parfitt and Jamie Carmichael said: “Jenna is one of the UK’s most loved and lauded actresses, whose career has seen her constantly stretch and redefine herself.

“As our lead actor and executive producer, she has been instrumental in bringing The War Rooms to life. Our intention is to build a series that takes a truly fresh view on a significant part of our collective history. A show that isn’t polite or reverential, but raw, confronting and offers fresh experiences, perspectives, narratives and faces.

“Ones that speak directly to our current, turbulent times and, critically, to an audience thirsty for tales of hope that help frame and make sense of today and tomorrow.”

The War Rooms is expected to premiere in 2022.

Jenna Coleman recently gave an update on the long-awaited fourth season of ITV’s hit Victoria series.

Victoria is available on DVD on Amazon.