Who is in The North Water cast?

The North Water: Full cast profiles for BBC Two’s brutal new sea-faring drama

The North Water boasts an amazing cast

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The North Water is packed full of amazing acting talent in its cast.

Starting this week, it has five episodes and charts the descent into madness of a crew of whalers heading up to the North Pole in the mid-1800s.

But who’s in the cast?

The North Water stars Jack O'Connell - but how did he become famous and where have you seen him before?
Jack as Sumner in The North Water (Credit: BBC)

The North Water cast: Who’s who?

Jack O’Connell plays Patrick Sumner

Who is Patrick Sumner? A ‘surgeon’, Sumner hides secrets from his past and joins the crew of The Volunteer to escape his demons.

Sadly, he might just meet a new one onboard.

Read more: BBC releases new images of Stephen Graham in dark period drama The North Water

Former Skins star Jack says: “He’s quite enigmatic. He was discharged from the Army under quite questionable circumstances.

“Was it necessarily all his wrongdoing? Did he deserve his discharge? Did he deserve to have his career completely upended?”

The North Water stars Colin Farrell - but who else is in the cast?
Colin Farrell is Drax (Credit: BBC)

The North Water cast: Colin Farrell plays Henry Drax

Who is Henry Drax? A harpoonist and a drunk, Drax is a terrifying, unhinged figure who has the taste for blood.

He’s played by Irish Hollywood star Colin, and The North Water marks his first role in TV since 2015’s True Detective.

Stephen Graham in The North Water
Stephen plays the captain of The Volunteer (Credit: BBC)

Stephen Graham plays Captin Arthur Brownlee

Who is Captain Brownlee? A man of stern demeanour, he’s torn between making lots of money from the whaling trip and a secret he’s hiding from the rest of the crew.

Stephen, 48, says: “He’s a man of integrity. He’s a whaler by trade, it’s in his blood.

“The character we created was that his dad was a whaler so he was always going to be a whaler. He always wanted to captain a ship and he did, and his first ship set sail and sank, so after not doing it for a while he comes back to captain The Voyager.”

The North Water stars Sir Tom Courtenay - but who else is in the cast?
The legend that is Sir Tom Courtenay (Credit: BBC)

Sir Tom Courtenay plays Baxter

Who is Baxter? A shady figure, Baxter owns The Volunteer and runs various business concerns in and around Hull.

However, he’s got his eye on a bigger prize with this mission.

Part of The North Water cast, 84-year-old Sir Tom is a legendary British actor whose credits include classics like Billy Liar, King & Country and Dr Zhivago.

The North Water stars Sam Spruell - but who else is in the cast?
Cavendish is one to watch (Credit: BBC)

Sam Spruell plays Cavendish

Who is Cavendish? Cavendish is the First Mate aboard The Volunteer, employed by Baxter because he does what he’s told and doesn’t show the kind of initiative that might derail Baxter’s plans.

However, despite his expertise at sea, he quickly spirals out of control.

You’ll recognise Sam from appearances in the likes of Luther, The Hurt Locker and Snow White & The Huntsman.

The North Water stars Roland Moller - but who else is in the cast?
Otto is a spiritual man (Credit: BBC)

Roland Møller plays Otto

Who is Otto? Also part of The North Water cast is Roland Møller, who plays Otto.

Otto is a Danish harpooner, who, despite his large build, is a deep thinker and spiritual man. He bonds with Sumner.

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