Is ITV's Angela Black based on a true story?

10 October 2021, 17:00

Angela Black is not based on a true story
Angela Black is not based on a true story. Picture: ITV

Is Angela Black a true story? Here's what Joanne Froggatt has said about the new ITV drama...

Angela Black is the gripping new drama airing on ITV this autumn.

Starring Joanne Froggatt as the main character, it tells the story of a woman who is experiencing horrific domestic abuse from her husband, Olivier.

Angela’s world is then turned upside down when a private investigator tells her some dark secrets about her marriage.

But is Angela Black based on a true story? Here’s what we know…

Angela Black is airing on ITV this autumn
Angela Black is airing on ITV this autumn. Picture: ITV

Is Angela Black based on a true story?

No, Angela Black is not based on a true story, it is a fictional series created by award winning writers Jack and Harry Williams.

But following recent statistics showing a rise in domestic abuse cases during the pandemic, the story shows the realities of living with an abusive partner.

According to the National Domestic Abuse Helpline, between April and December 2020, there was a 34% increase in calls and contacts, compared to the same period of 2019.

Angela Black focuses on the life of one woman, Angela who lives in suburban London with her two sons and husband, Olivier (Michiel Huisman).

Michiel Huisman plays Olivier in Angela Black
Michiel Huisman plays Olivier in Angela Black. Picture: ITV

Ahead of the series airing, Joanne Froggatt, 41, told PA: “Being in an abusive relationship and being literally stuck inside with that person, I can’t imagine the terror and fear that that brings.

“Jack and Harry have written a very timely story and an important story.

“It would be amazing if somebody out there sat there and went, ‘This makes me feel less alone’.”

Speaking to Heart.co.uk and other press, Joanne also explained how she prepared for the role by reading books of domestic abuse survivors.

“I read a book by Mandy Thomas called ‘You can’t run’ and it was harrowing and honest and incredibly moving and affecting.

Angela Black tells the story of a woman experiencing domestic abuse
Angela Black tells the story of a woman experiencing domestic abuse. Picture: ITV

“I also read Katie Piper’s book, I read Melanie B’s book, these stories are so intimate and personal and the emotions that go along with it all.

“The bravery it takes to talk about those emotions. I was blown away by their honesty.”

Actor Michiel also told us how he managed to get into the head of such a complex character.

He said: “I had to understand why he would do that so I could play Olivier.

“I needed to sympathise and understand him, that was my challenge, to be in control of his life and his wife and have a successful, beautiful family.

“And then to lose control and the demon comes out.”

If you've been affected by any of the issues raised, you can find out more at Refuge (www.refuge.org.uk) and Women's Aid (www.womensaid.org.uk).