Stephen Graham also stars. The Crown’s Erin Doherty has joined the cast of A Thousand Blows, an upcoming Disney+ series from Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight.
The 12-part series follows best friends Hezekiah (Malachi Kirby) and Alec (Francis Lovehall), who make their way from Jamaica to a Victorian London and find themselves drawn into the perilous underworld of illegal boxing. Here, Hezekiah meets all-female gang leader Mary Carr (Doherty), who introduces him to Sugar Goodson (Stephen Graham). Sugar is described as a “seasoned and dangerous” boxer, whose intense rivalry with Hezekiah will extend beyond the ring.
Mary’s gang, The Forty Elephants, consists of Hannah Walters as Eliza Moody, Nadia Albina as Verity Ross, Morgan Hilaire as Esme Long, Jemma Carlton as Belle Downer and Caoilfhionn Dunne as Anne Glover. Knight serves as creator, showrunner and writer, although some episodes have been written by newcomers Ameir Brown, Insook Chappell, Harlan Davies and Yasmin Joseph. Similarly, Tinge Krishnan serves as lead director, with contributions from Top Boy’s Ashley Walters and Coky Giedroyc.
Following the series’ announcement last year, Graham, who also serves as an executive producer, said: “To be able to work with Steve again and the talented team of writers we have for this project is truly wonderful, and to tell the story of these incredible characters during this period of time in London is a joy.
“Aside from having the privilege of bringing the role of Sugar Goodson to life, I am also extremely proud that Matriarch is co-producing this show whilst helping to create opportunities for people in front of and behind the camera, instilling the ethos of providing training within production that otherwise would be difficult for some to pursue as a career.”