BBC confirms major drama will be reshot after lead actor is removed

Role will be filled by another British star

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The BBC’s major new adaptation of an Agatha Christie classic is back on track, with actor Ed Westwick having been dropped from the series.

Ordeal By Innocence was meant to be screened over the festive period but was postponed, after allegations of sexual assault against star Ed.

London-born Ed, 30, has vehemently denied the accusations made by two women.

But the Beeb has made the decision to replace him in the drama with a different actor.

Ed Westwick has been accused of assaulting two women (Credit: FameFlynet)

Former Where The Heart Is star Christian Cooke, 30, will be stepping into the role of Mickey Argyll.

It’s believed that he’ll shoot new scenes for the Scotland-based drama later this month, alongside his fellow cast members.

Co-producers of the series, Mammoth Screen and Agatha Christie Limited, released a statement saying: “British actor Christian Cooke has been cast in the role of Mickey Argyll in Ordeal By Innocence.

Channel 4
Christian Cooke will now step into Westwick’s role (Credit: Channel 4)

“He will join other cast members including Bill Nighy, Anna Chancellor, Matthew Goode, Eleanor Tomlinson, Anthony Boyle, Luke Treadaway, Morven Christie, Crystal Clarke, Ella Purnell and Alice Eve on location in Scotland.”

Read more: BBC axes Christmas drama following rape allegations against one of the lead actors

Back in November, a woman claimed on Facebook that Westwick had assaulted her at his LA home in 2014.

Ordeal of Innocence was due to be screened on Boxing Day (Credit: BBC)

Shortly after, another woman also accused the actor of assault.

Following the accusations, Westwick posted a statement on Twitter defending himself.

The star of BBC comedy series White Gold wrote: “It is disheartening and sad to me that as a result of two unverified and provably untrue social media claims, there are some in this environment who could ever conclude I have had anything to do with such vile and horrific conduct.

Ed has vehemently denied the allegations on Twitter

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“I have absolutely not, and I am cooperating with the authorities so that they can clear my name as soon as possible.”

It has not yet been confirmed when the reshot Ordeal By Innocence will be screened.

The show was due to be screened on Boxing Day, but a statement from the BBC in November said: “These are serious allegations which Ed Westwick has strenuously denied.

“The BBC is not making any judgement but until these matters are resolved we will not include Ordeal by Innocence in the schedules.”