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Joanne Froggatt to play Britain's first female serial killer in Dark Angel

DOWNTON ABBEY actress Joanne Froggatt is teaming with one of that show's directors, Brian Percival, for UK television station ITV's two-part mini-series DARK ANGEL, based on the life of Victorian-era serial killer Mary Ann Cotton.

DARK ANGEL is being scripted by Gwyneth Hughes, who also wrote the TV movie THE GIRL, which was about Alfred Hitchcock's alleged obsession with Tippi Hedren. The project is taking inspiration from David Wilson's true crime novel MARY ANN COTTON: BRITAIN'S FIRST FEMALE SERIAL KILLER.

The show's synopsis:

The show starts with Mary Ann portrayed as a loving wife and mother, newly returned to her native North East of England. But faced with abject poverty and an ailing husband, we see how ruthlessly determined she is to pursue her desires — and a better life. 

Mary Ann turns into a serial killer — a poisoner whose methods leave no visible scars, allowing her tally of victims to mount unsuspected by a Victorian society unable to conceive of a woman capable of such terrible crimes. Travelling around the North East, she insinuates herself into unsuspecting families, marrying and creating new families of her own — before killing them, taking their money and moving on.

Through adultery, bigamy, fraud and murder, Mary Ann betters herself socially and financially. But the more she kills, the greater the risk her crimes will finally be exposed.

According to the Wikipedia entry on Mary Ann Cotton, the woman may have killed up to twenty-one people, including three of her four husbands and eleven of her thirteen children... Sounds like a real nightmare of a human being, and with someone like that at its core DARK ANGEL could make for incredibly disturbing viewing.

Filming begins in August, with air dates yet to be announced.

Extra Tidbit: Will you be watching DARK ANGEL?
Source: Variety

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