Skip to main contentSkip to footer

When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission. Read our full commerce guidelines here.

Happy Valley star James Norton shares first look at 'devastating' new show

James is set to star alongside Bridgerton actor Luke Thompson

james norton benedict
Emmy Griffiths
TV & Film Editor
Updated: 3 March 2023
Share this:

Happy Valley star James Norton has teamed up with Bridgerton actor Luke Thompson - and it looks seriously good. The actor, who has also starred in McMafia and Little Women, will play the lead role in A Little Life – a play adaptation from the novel by Hanya Yanagihara – and first look snaps have been released from the "heartbreaking" production.

The story follows a group of friends as they go through the trials and tribulations of life together, and has been described as a devastating story. Even Fifty Shades of Grey star Jamie Dornan had a surprising reaction to hearing about James' upcoming project on The Graham Norton Show, see it here…

WATCH: Jamie Dornan admits he was 'broken' by A Little Life

Speaking about the show himself, James said: "I'm playing Jude which is terrifying… It's a big sensational novel, if you read it you have a very powerful reaction to it… It is three and a half hours long… so we have one interval but the book is 800 pages so you have a lot to get through."

james norton little life luke 9© Jan Versweyveld

The play's first look photos from the rehearsals show James starring alongside Luke. The actor, who is perhaps best known for his role as Benedict Bridgerton on Bridgerton, plays Willem in the show, Jude's closest friend who is an aspiring actor.

benedict jude 5© Jan Versweyveld

The novel is known for dealing with issues including drug addiction, mental health issues, chronic pain and trauma, and another snap from the rehearsals show Jude in distress while being comforted by Nathalie Armin, who plays Anna.

james norton all© Jan Versweyveld

Discussing the new show, which is set to open at the Harold Pinter theatre on the West End in March, one person joked: " Just so you know, I would sell my kidney and pay to have access to a streaming version of the play. Just so you know," while another person added: "Needs a complimentary tissue box for every ticket."

malcolm house 7© Jan Versweyveld

A third person added: " It’s such a phenomenal book, the play will be as heartbreaking and equally beautiful." Discussing the casting, another person added: " Jude could not be more Jude. Like, this casting is perfect."

jude anna© Jan Versweyveld

Like this story? Sign up to our What to Watch newsletter and get the heads-up on the shows and films everyone’s talking about.

Sign up to HELLO Daily! for the best royal, celebrity and lifestyle coverage

By entering your details, you are agreeing to HELLO! Magazine User Data Protection Policy. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, please click here.