It’s one of the most dramatic shows on telly, so it makes sense Line of Duty’s casting decisions would be dramatic, too.
Insiders have revealed that for the fifth series – returning next year – of the huge hit show, lead actor Thandie Newton will be replaced with none other than award-winning TV star Stephen Graham.
Fresh from receiving a Best Actor award at the Royal Television Society Awards for his turn as a detective in Little Boy Blue – as well as roles in Pirates of the Caribbean, This Is England and Boardwalk Empire – Stephen, 44, is some perfect casting for the BBC show.
A source at The Sun said: “It’s a huge coup for Stephen, even as someone with his long CV. Not only is Line of Duty one of the hottest dramas on TV but he’s also following in the footsteps of a long line of high-profile signings, including Keeley Hawes and Daniel Mays.
“Producers are also thrilled to have him on board and have a very exciting story lined up. Just as he did in Little Boy Blue recently, he’s sure to have viewers glued to their edge of their seats.”
Filming is due to start in September, but it looks like the script is ready to go.
Last month, star of the show, Martin Compston posted a picture of the front page of episode one, writing: “Even better on second read. [Writer] Mr Mercurio has done it again. Gonna be some ride.”
Fans seemed thrilled by the news.
One viewer tweeted: “Stephen Graham is set to take on the central role in series 5 of Line Of Duty. I don’t know if that’s true but it would be great!”
Another added: “@StephenGraham73Step the best actor, in @Line_of_duty the best telly show. Hats off to whoever thought of that.”
A third added: “Stephen Graham would be PERFECT for Line of Duty, and I’m honestly shocked he hasn’t done it already. Please be true!”
The casting will reunite him with his old friend and This is England co-star, Vicky McClure.
Stephen will replace movie star Thandie, 45.
It comes after the actress recently revealed that Victoria Beckham was left “mortified” after she confused the actress for Zoe Saldana.
British actress Thandie said that she bumped into the Spice Girl turned fashion designer, 44, in Los Angeles.
Recently I was in … LA and Victoria Beckham, who I have actually met a few times, was there.
“We [were] chatting and it was obvious she thought I was someone else, so I said: ‘Do you think I am Zoe Saldana?’
“Victoria was absolutely mortified! It was actually OK as Zoe is a rare beauty, but really? Up close? Come on! And, I am British!”
VB is clearly not a big Line of Duty fan. Maybe Stephen will change that…
Are you excited about this new casting? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix and let us know what you think.