Viewers have been hugely impressed by the new BBC adaptation Noughts and Crosses, which sees main characters Sephy and Callum fall in love despite the colour of their skin and the world that wants to keep them apart. The series has a stellar cast, so find out more about who is involved here...
Masali Baduza - Sephy Hadley
Masali plays Sephy, a privileged 'Cross' who begins to question society's divide as she falls in love with Callum. This is Masali's first major role after having starred in a short film and action series, Trackers. Speaking to The Independent about the role, she said: "This is a moment as an actor I felt like I’ve dreamed of for so long and to be living it? Honestly, it’s the best feeling ever." The star already has an impressive social media following, and has been sharing snaps promoting the new series on Instagram. She also opened up about how the novel has been adapted for television, explaining: "In the books, Sephy and Callum are young teenagers and Malorie [Blackman] has done a great job because you can feel Sephy’s naivety. She’s new to everything. I think being new to the industry and not having known about Malorie’s books before [I got the part] kind of aided in portraying that naivety."
Masali plays Sephy
Jack Rowan - Callum McGregor
Jack, 23, plays Callum, a 'Nought' who is hoping to help his community by being one of the first Noughts allowed to join the military. The actor is perhaps best known for his role as Bonnie Gold in Peaky Blinders and has also also starred in Silent Witness and Beowulf. Speaking to NME about his role in the new BBC drama, he explained: "Once I got the part, I [immediately] read the book. From the first page and from the first word, I was emotionally invested and my mouth was constantly watering because I couldn’t wait to play this guy. I knew that I was part of something that is very special, very powerful and very unique."
Jack opened up about playing Callum
Bonnie Mbuli - Jasmine Hadley
Bonnie plays Sephy's mother Jasmine, who has affairs and a drinking problem to make up for her unhappy marriage. Bonnie is a huge star, and has also previously starred as Winnie Mandela in Invictus, and is due to star in new show Vagrant Queen later this year.
Bonnie plays Sephy's mother, Jasmine
Paterson Joseph - Home Secretary Kamel Hadley
Paterson plays Kamel, the Home Secretary and Sephy's father. Paterson is perhaps best known for playing Johnson in Peep Show. He has also starred in The Hollow Crown and The Leftovers. Speaking about the series, he told The Guardian: "I don’t think it’s zeitgeist, because this issue is always there, but we’re particularly living in a time where the volume has been turned up on all that."
Paterson plays Sephy's father, Kamel
Jonathan Ajayi - Lekan Baako
Jonathan plays Lekan, Sephy's boyfriend who is deeply mistrustful of Callum. Set to star in Women Woman 1984, he is at the start of an amazing career, and opened up about his television debut in the BBC drama on Twitter. He wrote: "As a kid I dreamt of being an actor, but I got bullied out of that dream. Despite my Mum telling me to follow my heart, my dream was dead. Wasn’t until I gave it to God that EVERYTHING changed. Today my DEBUT TV role airs on BBCOne. ALL GLORY TO GOD."
Jonathan plays Sephy's boyfriend Lekan
Josh Dylan - Jude McGregor
You might recognise Josh from Mamma Mia 2, where he played a younger version of Bill. The actor plays Jude, Callum's older brother who becomes embroiled in the Liberation Militia - a militant Noughts group. Josh also played Todd in The End of the F***ing World season two, and starred in the 2016 film Allied.
Mamma Mia star Josh plays Jude
Helen Baxendale - Meggie McGregor
Helen is perhaps best known for her role as Rachel Bradley in Cold Feet, or as Ross' love interest Emily in Friends. The actress plays Meggie, Callum's mother and the Hadley family's housekeeper. Speaking to the BBC about the part, she explained: "When I told my children what character I was up for they gasped, so I knew this role was great. Within the scripts and the book Meggie is very strong and warm, she is a real mum, she gets on with things and she wants the best for people. All of these terrible things are happening in this awful world around her but it doesn’t stop Meggie from being loving and kind but also firm. She is a multifaceted character. She is not overtly political in that she is just trying to get through her day and she is a survivor in every sense of the world."
Helen plays Meggie McGregor
Stormzy - Kolawale
Stormzy plays Kolawale, a newspaper editor. The character was created for the series, so we're excited to see what he will be like! Speaking about being part of the show, the famous rapper and singer said: "As a diehard fan of Malorie’s novels, being a part of this important show is a dream come true." Speaking about Stormzy on the show, Josh Dylan told Radio Times: "He's stupidly talented, annoyingly so. This guy is not an actor, but he comes in and he’s just amazing. He’s passionate and he’s in it for the right reasons. It means a lot to him from what I gather, because he loves Malorie Blackman and loves the books."
When is Stormzy's episode on?
Fans will have to wait for a while for Stormzy to star as the series, as he will make his debut in the final episode.
Stormzy is a huge fan of the books
Shaun Dingwall - Jack Dorn
Shaun plays Jack, the head of the Liberation Militia who encourages Jude to join. Shaun is also known for starring in Doctor Who and New Tricks. Speaking about his character in Noughts and Crosses, he explained: "He is a provocateur, a political stirrer, a troublemaker and above all else, ultimately he is a terrorist and will stop at nothing to further the cause. In some ways he is a perfect reflection of the character Kamal Hadley, as they are both political animals interested in chaos and disruption to achieve their ultimate goals. Their goals are different but the means they would use to get there are not dissimilar."
Shaun plays Jack Dorn