The Night Manager was a huge success both in keeping its audience on the edges of their seats and showcasing some of the best British acting talent we have. The 6-part adaptation of John le Carre’s 1993 espionage novel pretty much topped the ratings each week, finishing the series run with 6.6 million viewer. This beat ITV’s royal special Our Queen, which followed slowly behind with a somewhat mere 5.6 million in comparison. The star vehicle was probably what hooked in the huge opening audience, but they stayed for the unrelenting tension and unpredictable twists.
The casting definitely elevated the hype and prestige around the series; Tom Hiddleston leading the cast as former British Iraq war soldier turned hotelier, Jonathan Pine. He is recruited by intelligence operative Angela Burr, portrayed by three time BAFTA winner Olivia Colman. His mission is to infiltrate the inner-circle of one of the world’s most revered arms dealers Richard Roper, played by the unlikely villain and double Golden Globe winner Hugh Laurie. His mission gets a little bit harder when he becomes infatuated with the beautiful Jed Marshall (Elizabeth Dibicki) who also happens to be Roper’s girlfriend, and not forgetting when Roper’s right-hand man Major Lance Corcoran (Tom Hollander), known colloquially as Corky, starts to become a little too suspicious of Pine’s motives.
The adaptation of the le Carre novel is a step-by-step guide in how to create tension on screen. With David Farr producing a wonderfully written screenplay, and directed by the Oscar-winning Susanne Bier, The Night Manager brought a new thrill into Britain’s Sunday nights and will be strongly missed by many. There has been conformation of a second series but it is not clear what exactly it will be based on, as the entirety of Le Carre’s novel was adapted for the first series. Tom Hiddleston had a career-defining performance in the series as a suave British spy all too similar to one we know as 007, and he has been pinned to take over the infamous role after Daniel Craig.
Written by Heather Thornton