site search by freefind
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell “A very bold and ambitious production
  adapted from Susanna Clarke’s
  acclaimed novel, Jonathan Strange &
  Mr Norrell
began a seven-week
  serialisation on BBC One in May 2015.
  Now this beautifully bizarre fantasy
  period story of two rival magicians with
  extraordinary powers set during
s war with Napoleon makes its
  debut on home entertainment ..

IN BRINGING SUSANNA CLARKE'S BRILLIANT and widely-acclaimed novel Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell to the small screen for a seven-week run from 17 May (2015), the BBC has ventured into the realms of myth, legend and the supernatural with a delicious world of fantasy set in the year 1806, when Britain was engaged in the war with Napoleon's French army.

Although it has been some three centuries since magicians passed into legend, the members of the society The Friends of English Magic in York, refuse to believe none exist and investigate the reclusive Mr Gilbert Norrell (Eddie Marsan: Sherlock Holmes; Southcliffe), who describes himself as a "tolerable practical magician" while stunning audiences with his remarkable talents.

Be amazed... be very
Drama at its best
with a beautifully-bizarre
fantasy story
woven around a fine
period background, Jonathan Strange &
Mr Norrell
is worthy of the
highest accolades...”
Mr Honeyfoot (Brian Pettifer) and Mr Segundus (Edward Hogg), want Norrell to demonstrate his magic. Segundus has been sold a spell by an eccentric street magician called Vinculus (Paul Kaye: Game Of Thrones; Dennis Pennis), who holds a secret and spouts prophecies, predicting that two magicians will go head-to-head and bring magic back to England and they believe Norrell is one of them.

Having astounded his followers by giving statues in York Minster voices and movement, Norrell moves to London and agrees to help Minister of War Sir Walter Pole (Samuel West) with the war effort. Accosted in an alley by Vinculus, Norrell learns of the prophecy of two magicians and the legend of The Raven King, which alarms him.

A distraught Sir Walter begs Norrell for help as his beloved fiancée Emma (Alice Englert: New Worlds; Beautiful Creatures) has died; but when Norrell reluctantly agrees to attempt to bring her back to life with magic, he little realises there is a terrible price to pay.

Having summonsed a "faerie" known as The Gentleman (Marc Warren: Mad Dogs; Hustle), who makes an agreement with Norrell for Emma's life, he finds he has been tricked. Emma comes to realise death is preferable to the nightmare in which she exists under an enchantment which has apparently driven her mad.

Norrell is feted as a hero as he uses his magic to conjure up a fearsome ghostly armada to strike terror into the French and it is inconceivable that any other magician will arrive to challenge him. But his pact with The Gentleman is still to have terrifying consequences.

Meanwhile, a handsome and daring, if feckless, young man seeks to marry Arabella (Charlotte Riley), the sister of his friend Henry (Robert Hands), a vicar. Arabella loves Jonathan Strange (Bertie Carvel: Coalition; Babylon) but Henry wants Jonathan to find himself a job and prove himself capable of supporting her.

Having met Vinculus sleeping under a tree and hearing his prophecies, Jonathan realises he could make a career out of being a magician and becomes Norrell's apprentice.

Sir Walter's black manservant Stephen Black (Ariyon Bakare) has also fallen under the spell of The Gentleman and can no longer be trusted to care for his mistress. It soon becomes apparent that Emma is living a terrifying existence and has good reason to fear sleep.

What started out as a gift will soon turn into a deadly game of chance as the two obsessive magicians, neither above using anything at their disposal including the dark arts, go head-to-head in a combat that could be far more dangerous than the threat from the French.

In Belgium, Portugal and Venice where he is befriended by Dr James Greysteel (Clive Mantel) and his daughter Flora (Lucinda Dryzek) Jonathan seeks to save Britain from the French and the world from evil by challenging the trickery of The Gentleman.

But even as he strives to right wrongs, the nightmare world of The Gentleman, the land of Lost Hope, clashes with the Earthly plane; and Jonathan's magic fails to protect those he holds dear.

This terrific drama, with superb period sets, dark supernatural undertones and visual delights, is magical and you will never look at a mirror in the same light again! Gloriously bizarre, it is utterly addictive and cannot fail to impress. Among the spectacular effects is the sand horses Jonathan creates to prevent a shipwreck.

Be amazed… be very amazed! Drama at its best with a beautifully-bizarre fantasy story woven around a fine period background, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell is worthy of the highest accolades.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell also features: Enzo Cilenti as Childermass; Vincent Franklin as Drawlight; John Hefferman as Lascelles; Vernon Dobtcheff as Laurence Strange; Phoebe Nicholls as Mrs Winterbourne; William Chubb as Mr Bickerton; Martyn Ellis as Foxcastle; Richard Durden as Lord Liverpool; Steve Jackson as Jeremy Johns; Robbie O'Neill as Lucas; Ronan Vibert as Lord Wellington; and Niall Greig Fulton as The Raven King.

Costume Designer is Barbara Kidd; Composers are Benoit Charest and Benoit Groulx; Music provided by the BBC Concert Orchestra; Series Cinematography by Stephen Pehrsson and Lukas Strebel; Written by Peter Harness from the novel by Susanna Clarke; Produced by Nick Hirschkorn; and Directed by Tony Haynes.

* The magical and highly-anticipated Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell makes its UK DVD and Blu-ray debut, courtesy of RLJ Entertainment's Acorn Label, on 29 June 2015. Certificate: 15 | DVD Running Time: 413 Minutes Approximately | Catalogue Number: AV3210 | RRP: £24.99. Blu-ray Running Time: 413 Minutes Approximately | Catalogue Number: AB2016 | RRP: £27.99.

Special Features Over 20 minutes of exclusive behind-the-scenes footage and deleted scenes.

"Be amazed… be very amazed! Drama at its best with a beautifully-bizarre fantasy story woven around a fine period background, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell is worthy of the highest accolades" Maggie Woods, MotorBar

"The best UK fantasy in years… Worth getting very excited about" Den of Geek

"Nothing less than a television triumph" Digital Spy

"You'll be hooked. So far, so fantastic" Guardian Guide