BBC2’s drama department has returned to Northern Ireland for new three-part thriller Paula.
The mini-series centres around a troubled young chemistry teacher who is trying to end an affair with married colleague Philip.
When Paula – played by acclaimed Stella actress Denise Gough – finds rats in her home she employs the services of a young handyman James (Victoria’s Tom Hughes) to exterminate them.
With an obvious spark between them, a passionate encounter is inevitable.
Denise – who starred in Belfast-set thriller The Fall as Dr Walden – reveals her character instigate the fling with James.
“Paula seduces him in quite a bold way. Normally, when the man comes in, the woman says ‘Oh my god’ …. but Paula is like ‘Get over here’.”
And she warns that we might not like her, adding: “I like playing women who don’t apologise for what they do in their lives. Why do we have to like her?”
Although charming, James is obviously hiding something dark.
The BBC blurb says a dance of destruction ensues between him and Paula.
James works out that Paula has been having an affair with Phillip and decides to blackmail him in an effort to escape his own financial woes.
When James goes missing, a policeman comes knocking on Paula’s door, wanting to know why he had been calling her late at night before he vanished.
The show’s writer Conor McPherson says: “It’s a great pleasure to work with the BBC and Cuba Pictures on this series.
“Exploring new ways to tell stories is always an inspiring challenge and the opportunity to weave a drama across three evenings is one I have enjoyed immensely.
“The trust and freedom they have given me at every step is something every writer dreams about and the astonishing cast they have assembled couldn’t be more exciting.”