Anna Friel returns as troubled cop Marcella in the third series of the ITV1 drama of the same name – and her character has lost everything.
Sadly, actress Anna has revealed she’s also familiar with heartbreak after recently breaking up with her long-term boyfriend.
So is Anna Friel single or dating?
Here’s everything you need to know about Anna and her love life.
***Warning: possible spoilers from series three of Marcella ahead***
Who is Anna Friel in Marcella?
Anna plays the titular heroine Marcella Backland, a police detective drawn to violence.
The character does not play by the book, and goes way beyond her job description – often breaking the law herself.
On top of this, she suffers from a condition called dissociative identity disorder (DID), which causes memory black outs.
At moments of intense stress, she enters an amnesiac state and can turn extremely violent.
Over the course of the second season, Marcella lost everything – her kids, her job, her boyfriend and her identity.
At the end of series two, she was officially ‘dead’ and we see her sleeping rough under a bridge.
In series three of Marcella, she is working as an undercover cop in Belfast.
Anna Friel won an International Emmy for her performance in the role.
What else has Anna Friel been in?
Anna made her professional acting debut at the tender age of 13 in TV series G.B.H.
She played the daughter of Michael Palin’s character in the mini-series, which aired in the UK in 1991 and was nominated for several BAFTAs.
She famously went on to portray Beth Jordache in Brookside.
Anna has portrayed Bella in Our Mutual Friend, Megan Delaney in The Jury, Charlotte ‘Chuck’ Charles in Pushing Daisies and Ellie Manning in Without You.
In 2018, Anna played the mother of a trans child in ITV drama Butterfly.
Since 2016, Anna has kept viewers gripped as Marcella in the ITV1 crime drama of the same name.
Anna Friel and THAT Brookside kiss
Anna played Beth Jordache in Brookside.
The character became famous for two things – the first ever female same-sex kiss on TV, and helping to kill her abusive dad Trevor and burying under the patio.
The lesbian kiss was aired before the 9pm watershed on the Channel 4 soap.
The kiss was between Beth Jordache and Margaret Clemence, played by Nicola Stephenson.
Anna has said: “I am proud we took on such controversial storylines and it was new and innovative.”
The kiss was later screened to a TV audience of billions when a clip of it was included in the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
How old is Anna?
Anna was born on July 12 1976.
She is currently 44 years old.
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Where is Anna from?
Anna was born in Rochdale, Greater Manchester.
She attended Crompton House Church of England School, and later Holy Cross College.
She began her training as an actress at Oldham Theatre Workshop.
Is Anna Friel single or dating?
Anna has been in two long term relationships with fellow actors.
In 2001, she began a relationship with actor David Thewlis, after the pair met on a flight to Cannes.
They separated after almost 10 years together.
Anna went on to date Welsh actor Rhys Ifans from 2011 and 2014.
Most recently, Anna’s four year relationship with army officer Mark Jaworski ended over lockdown.
She told The Times: “Going through heartbreak during lockdown hasn’t been easy.
“I am one of those lockdown statistics where the relationship didn’t work.
“Normally you can busy yourself, and go to meet other people, but to actually have a break-up and be on my own during lockdown just with my daughter…
“But there’s always someone worse off.”
She went on to say she wasn’t “actively seeking anyone to mend my broken heart”.
Anna added that she’s “going through a period of healing”.
Previous flings include Darren Day and Robbie Williams.
Does she have kids?
Anna has a daughter Gracie Ellen Mary Friel from her relationship with David Thewlis.
She was born on July 9 2005 at Portland Hospital, London.
Gracie was named after actress and singer Gracie Fields.
Anna and Gracie, now 15, live together in Windsor.
Marcella begins with a double bill on ITV1 at 9pm and 10.05pm on Tuesday January 26 2021.
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